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Loxahatchee Groves hopes to fix roads by taking over water district

Posted at 4:53 PM, Jun 26, 2018
and last updated 2018-06-26 18:27:06-04

Washed out roads and large potholes have had people in Loxahatchee Groves pushing for change over the last month. Now the town's leaders feel that change is coming.

"The shape of the roads, they were terrible and not being able to do anything was probably the most frustrating thing that I've ever experienced," Mayor Dave Browning said.

Property owners in the town of Loxahatchee Groves voted Monday night to make the Loxahatchee Groves Water Control District part of the town. It's been an independent body for the last 100 years with its own funding stream.

“It’s now under one government, one budget, we can work together and serve the people much better," Mayor Browning said.

The town has had control of all the roads since October but didn't have the funding to maintain them because that money still belonged to the water control district.

"To know what you need to do and not have the ability to do it, that was very frustrating," Mayor Browning said.

Town council members made the consolidation official at a meeting this morning, so they will now have access to the assessment funds the water control district receives from taxpayers.

"The roads have really been in bad shape, but there is hope on the horizon," said Marge Herzog, a Loxahatchee Groves resident and former town council member. "There are many things the town council and the management have in place that they’re going to address. These roads are going to get better. Can’t get much worse."

"I don’t know if it was the right decision or not," said Nancy Fried, who owns The Good Earth Farm in Loxahatchee Groves. "It’s not a comfortable decision. It really depends on management and organization and I just don’t think they have it."

The water control district's employees are now part of the town’s staff, Mayor Browning said.

One council member suggested eventually making the water district into a public works department.

Mayor Browning said he wants to fix the roads as quickly as possible. The first step is looking at what funding is available from the water district.