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OCTA awards $2 million to improve O.C. water quality

The Orange County Transportation Authority board this week allocated more than $2 million to improve water quality in Orange County.

The funds come from Measure M, the half-cent sales tax approved by Orange County voters in 2006 for transportation improvements.

The ballot measure includes funding for an environmental cleanup program that awards money on a competitive basis to cities and the county for projects that reduce the impacts of water pollution related to transportation.

Protecting the county’s natural resources, while at the same time improving the transportation network, is a key promise made to voters in Measure M.

The OCTA board has approved funding for nearly 150 projects since the inception of this program in 2011, totaling approximately $19 million. It is estimated that more than 1 million cubic feet of trash has since been captured as a result of the installation of these devices.

After reviewing 11 applications from 10 cities this year, the OCTA board on Monday, Sept. 9 approved making $2 million available for all 11 projects focused on removing visible pollutants, such as litter and debris, from roads before they reach waterways.

These projects include purchasing or upgrading screens, filters and inserts for catch basins, as well as other devices designed to remove pollutants.

The following cities received funding: Anaheim, Costa Mesa, Fullerton, Lake Forest, Laguna Hills, Laguna Niguel, Mission Viejo, Newport Beach, Orange and Seal Beach.

This article was released by the Orange County Transportation Authority.