CLEARWATER - The City of Clearwater has been notified by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service that it will be receiving a grant of $1,236,097 to help fund the transient docking facilities that will be a part of the city's downtown boat slip project.
The project will provide 2,600 linear feet of temporary docking facilities for visiting boaters and 12 fixed slips.
The grant had been applied for before last month's referendum, and had been presented as a possible source of funding for the $11-million project. The matching grant covers 25-percent of the $5-million cost of the transient facilities, requiring the city to dedicate $3.7-million according to Joelle Castelli, Clearwater's Assistant Director of Public Communications.
Margie Simmons, Clearwater's Director of Finance, wrote, "We are very excited about the award of the grant for $1,236,097. As you know, we did not include this grant in our financial projections. Receiving the $1,236,097 in grant funds reduces the annual debt service by approximately $115,000 per year for the first 19 years of operations (that is the time period to totally pay off the bonds), increasing the annual net income during that same time period by the same $115,000."
The savings in debt service will total more than $2-million, adding substantially to the $4.5-million operating profit projected by the city for 40-year economic life of the docking facility.