District donates 12 vehicles to REDI community partners

PALATKA, Fla., May 10, 2016 — A dozen surplus St. Johns River Water Management District vehicles have new homes in Putnam County and the cities of Hawthorne, Palatka and Bunnell.

“By donating these vehicles and allowing them to continue to serve the people of the district, we are helping our REDI community partners address their financial challenges,” said St. Johns River Water Management District Executive Director Dr. Ann Shortelle. “I’m proud to be part of a program that helps our neighbors and improves the economic viability of Florida’s rural communities.”

The district routinely disposes of items that are obsolete, serve no useful function, are uneconomical or inefficient for continued use, or have exceeded their useful service life.

Two SUVs, two cars, a van and seven trucks, ranging in age from 19 years to eight years old, were donated to the cities of Bunnell, Hawthorne and Palatka, Putnam County and the Putnam County School District.

“By partnering with the district, the city has been able to receive three much-needed vehicles to serve our community. This will double our fleet of vehicles!” said Hawthorne City Manager Ellen Vause. “The district’s surplus program for REDI communities gives us a helping hand up and will better able us to serve our community, and your district. We would like to thank the Governing Board, Executive Director Ann Shortelle and all the staff for the continued support.”

In December, district staff contacted the economically disadvantaged Rural Economic Development Initiative (REDI) communities within its boundaries to gauge interest in receiving its surplus items as donations. REDI was established to significantly improve Florida’s rural economies, specifically in terms of personal income, job creation, average wages and strong tax bases.