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Former Manatee County Phosphate Plant an Area of Concern

Despite being out of operation, Piney Point Phosphates Plant is still an area of concern as there is no closure plan for the facility, warns Manatee County’s parks and natural resources director.

“That’s something that we should be concerned of,” Charlie Hunsicker said Monday at League of Women Voters of Manatee County luncheon about Florida’s algae crisis.

Without a company owning the plant, which is just east of Port Manatee, Piney Point may be the only plant in Florida without a closure plan or a funding source, Hunsicker said.

At Piney Point, the threat isn’t so much from groundwater but continues to be from the top, which still holds water, Hunsicker said.

But, he noted, it is not the county commission’s problem.

“We have no plan. None. Other than status quo for our future for Piney Point and that is something we’ve got to work on,” he said. “It is not a Manatee County taxpayer problem, but it is a problem nonetheless and right now we are just ignoring it.”