On October 5, 2018, the Alabama Gulf Coast Recovery Council (Council) released its Draft State Expenditure Plan (SEP) for a 45-day public comment period. In a public meeting on March 7, 2018, the Council voted on projects to include in its “Bucket 3” plan. The Council recently adopted the Draft SEP which, once finalized, will be submitted to the Gulf Coast Ecosystem Restoration Council for review and approval. The projects proposed in this plan are all located within the Gulf Coast Region and are consistent with the eligible criteria as stated in the RESTORE Act.
The Alabama Gulf Coast Recovery Council was created with the passage of the Resources and Ecosystems Sustainability, Tourist Opportunities, and Revived Economies Act of 2012 (RESTORE Act). The 10-member council is made up of the Governor, who serves as chair; the Director of the Alabama State Port Authority, who serves as vice-chair; the Chairman of the Baldwin County Commission; the President of the Mobile County Commission; and the Mayors of Bayou La Batre, Dauphin Island, Fairhope, Gulf Shores, Mobile, and Orange Beach. Former Congressman Jo Bonner serves as the Governor’s representative in her absence.
To engage the public in its project selection process, in July 2017, the Council made a call for projects to be submitted in Alabama’s Coastal Restoration portal. The Council used project submissions received through that process, along with projects previously submitted since the portal went live in March 2014, to select projects for further evaluation and ultimate placement on the Draft SEP project slate.
The proposed activities for Spill Impact Component funding in this plan have a total estimated cost of $132,294,450.
The Council is now asking for public comment on this Draft State Expenditure Plan until Tuesday, November 20, 2018. Comments can be submitted online at firstname.lastname@example.org or mailed to: Alabama Gulf Coast Recovery Council, 118 N. Royal Street, Suite 603, Mobile, AL 36602.
The Council will present the proposed plan and receive comments at a public meeting next month, details of which will be announced separately. Comments received by the November 20 deadline will be reviewed and considered in preparing the Final State Expenditure Plan.