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Water quality top concern at Sarasota legislative delegation meeting

Sarasota members of Legislature say they plan to keep pushing water issues as last year’s red tide bloom continues to reverberate

Improving water quality was among the top priorities for local officials who came before the Sarasota County Legislative Delegation Monday.

City and county leaders asked for help from the state as they seek to reduce water pollution after last year’s devastating red tide bloom.

“The biggest thing is water quality and we’re all saying the same thing,” said Sarasota County Commissioner Charles Hines. “The question is what are you doing about it?”

Sarasota County is moving ahead with major wastewater treatment improvements to fix problems with the system.

“We’re doing what we can to make it right,” Hines said.

Upgrading the region’s wastewater and stormwater systems to keep water laden with algae-feeding nutrients out of the natural environment is hugely expensive, though.