Local governments getting money to stop bear prowling

Images of a black bear roaming a neighborhood in Springfield have alarmed people living nearby.

ORLANDO, Fla. (AP) -- Florida wildlife officials are sending $825,000 to local governments so residents can have secured trash cans that will cut back on the number of bears prowling neighborhoods.

The Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission on Tuesday said local governments that passed bear ordinances requiring trash to be secure from bears would be eligible for the funds.

Those include Orange, Seminole, Lake and Santa Rosa counties, which each got $150,000 or more.

Other counties receiving smaller amounts were Collier, Franklin, Gulf, Leon, Marion, Putnam, Volusia and Wakulla counties.

The state agency estimates there are 4,000 adult black bears in Florida.

Agency officials say unsecured trash cans are the number one reason why bears come into neighborhoods where they can threaten residents and pets.