Holmes and Washington pitch funding priorities to Abbott, Trumbull

State Rep. Shane Abbott and Sen. Jay Trumbull held their Holmes and Washington County legislative delegation meetings Tuesday.
Held before the beginning of the new legislative session, the meeting gives municipalities and other local agencies the opportunity to request support or funding for specific projects through state appropriations.
Holmes County Board of County Commissioners listed legislative priorities in the form of additional funding for a new EMS facility along with funding for a new building to house both the tax collector and property appraiser’s office.
“Being able to provide these facilities would greatly improve the quality of life and service to our residents,†said Chairman Earl Stafford.
Washington County Board of County Commissioners made their top priority to request two fire tanker trucks to replace the existing 40-year-old trucks currently in use.
“These new trucks will help improve our ISO ratings which will in turn help reduce insurance rates for our constituents,†said Chairman Tray Hawkins.
The county also asked for funding to help repair and improve the parking lot at the county annex office.
City of Bonifay City Clerk Rickey Callahan made a request for funding in the amount of $400,000 to do a full renovation of city hall. The project would include a new HVAC system and weatherization of the entire building.
Chipley Mayor Tracy Andrews requested funding to construct a new city government efficiency complex to house all city offices. Funding for a sewer line extension project on Highway 77 and Interstate 10 were also on the list for legislative priorities.
Ponce de Leon Volunteer Fire Department’s Fire Chief Doug Remmel made a request for help to fund a new fire station citing safety concerns for both the existing building and the asphalt pad going into the station.
“We can feel the ground giving way when we drive out of the station. My biggest fear is one day it will completely give way and we won’t be able to go on a call,†Remmel said.
The Town of Wausau requested appropriated funding to complete the renovation of Possum Palace. The prior CDBG grant funding was not enough to complete the project and the town is unable to reapply for a second CDBG grant for another five years.
Abbott and Trumbull thanked all who attended the meetings and expressed their excitement to work with the counties and municipalities in the coming years.