Water-Related News

Water Authority expects $550,000 bill in fight over future water withdrawals

A regional authority that supplies drinking water to North Port as well as the counties of Sarasota, Charlotte and DeSoto expects to spend up to $550,000 to defend its plan to increase withdrawals from the Peace River. Seven government entities in upstream Polk County recently filed legal challenges to block that expansion plan.

The board of the Peace River-Manasota Regional Water Supply Authority spent nearly a half-hour Wednesday in a closed-door session with its attorney, Douglas Manson, to discuss the pending cases. It then reconvened a public meeting to authorize payments to Manson’s Tampa-based firm for its defense.

Sitting as the authority’s board, Sarasota County Commissioner Alan Maio, Manatee County Commissioner Priscilla Whisenant Trace, DeSoto County Commissioner Elton A. Langford and Charlotte County Commissioner Ken Doherty approved the potential expenses unanimously. They did not publicly discuss the litigation.