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Pollution Hotline

(863) 834-3300

Curtis Porterfield
Manager of Lakes & Stormwater
(863) 834-8439

Laurie Smith
Environmental Specialist
(863) 834-6276

Cole Edwards
Engineering Technician
(863) 834-3307

Sandra George
Lakes Management Biologist
(863) 834-3328

Cindy Hill
Lakes Program Coordinator
(863) 834-8429

Stephanie Witherspoon

Environmental Technician II

(863) 834-8438

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Department of Public Works 

Lakes and Stormwater Division
407 Fairway Ave.
Lakeland, Florida 33801

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Just Keep Swimming - Fishing Line Recycling Project

Lawton Chiles Middle School Students Help to Recycle Fishing Line

Just Keep Swimming is an environmental project developed by students at Lawton Chiles Middle Academy to properly dispose and recycle monofilament fishing line. The thin, clear, and flexible material not only ensnares marine and terrestrial wildlife but can last up to 600 years in an ecosystem.  The students have been working hard this year to not only educate the public about the hazards of discarding the material in and around our lakes but also come up with solutions to ensure the material is collected and recycled properly.  

At the recent Cardboard Boat Race event, employees with the City of Lakeland’s Lakes and Stormwater division saw the student’s educational display and offered to help with their project.  A plan was set in motion to construct eleven monofilament recycling containers and place them at area lakes known for their fishing activity. The containers were made from 4” PVC pipe and stand about 2 feet tall. Students took time to decorate the pipes with stickers bearing different recycling messages. It is their hope for the future that a monofilament recycling container will be placed at all of the lakes here in our beautiful city.

As part of the project the students also developed a video and website to highlight the project and bring awareness to the problem.  Once on the site you will find photo galleries, educational Powerpoint displays and even a public poll. You can view the site at

Great job Lawton Chiles Middle School!