An edition of: WaterAtlas.orgPresented By: Sarasota County, USF Water Institute

Water-Related News

Sarasota County’s Public Utilities focusing on projects to protect and improve water quality

Sarasota County logo

SARASOTA COUNTY – Sarasota County’s Public Utilities Department continues to be a leader in finding efficient, effective, protective, and cost saving ways of serving the community.

There are many projects in the works to support the community that focus on protecting and enhancing water quality.

Converting the water reclamation facilities (WRFs) to an advanced wastewater treatment (AWT) capacity is one of the department’s flagship efforts. The Bee Ridge facility's expansion is well underway and represents the largest investment for a capital improvement project in the county’s history.

Having gone from concept to concrete in only three years, the project, when finished, will provide the following benefits:

  • Remove significant amounts of nitrogen and phosphorous in the effluent.
  • Provide high quality reclaimed water for irrigating homes, medians, and golf courses, which conserves drinking water.
  • Provide opportunities for recharging the Florida aquifer.
  • Promote economic benefits by keeping our bays, waterways, and the Gulf healthy and clean.

The Bee Ridge conversion is the first step in a larger plan to convert both the Venice Gardens WRF and Central County WRF into advanced wastewater treatment capacities, further protecting water quality.

According to Public Utilities Director Mike Mylett, the continued focus on safeguarding the bays and estuaries is all part of the department’s mission to provide the highest quality of customer service.

“Our water quality is paramount to our way of life,” he said. “It draws visitors, inspires residents, and makes Sarasota County one of the premier communities in the nation.”

Additional accomplishments and initiatives include:

  • The Fats, Oils, and Grease program, which, to date, has kept eight million gallons of grease and other harmful substance out of the utility system.
  • A Lift Station rehabilitation program that will extend utilities infrastructure for another 30 to 40 years.
  • Upgrading the Mabry T. Carlton Water Treatment Facility, which will increase treatment capacity and efficiency.

“These improvements will be an ongoing effort, one that will continue to develop and evolve, just like the community we serve,” said Mylett.

To learn more about these projects, call 311, visit

To view the department’s recent State of Public Utilities presentation, visit this link

Sarasota County prohibits discrimination in all services, programs or activities.