Sarasota News Leader

09/20/2013

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Sarasota News Leader September 20, 2013 Page 44 During the joint meeting Tuesday, County Commissioner Nora Patterson noted the "controversial history" related to past efforts to dredge Big Pass. finding the sand source. Because of shifting sands and the "ever decreasing volumes of suitable offshore submerged sand deposits in the area," federal officials have been seeking a suitable source to replenish the beach, Sand dredged from either of the two passes according to a Sept. 17 memo from Sarasota would be used to rebuild Lido Key's beach, County staff. which most recently suffered severe erosion when Tropical Storm Debby stayed offshore NEW PASS for several days in June 2012. The Corps has dredged New Pass in the past According to Sarasota County staff, the over- to keep it navigable, but it has hit a federal all renourishment plan would solve "mutual funding cap for such work, Wreford told the problems" by providing needed dredging in two boards. the two inlets and less expensive near-shore As a result, future navigational dredging will sand for Lido Beach. not happen without authorization of addition"Long story short, there is an opportunity al federal funding. But there is another alterhere, at least potentially, to solve a lot of dif- native that can permit the pass to be dredged ferent problems," Laird Wreford, the county's again. coastal resources manager, said at the joint If sand from the pass specifically were to be meeting. used for Lido's renourishment, the dredging The Lido Beach project has been approved by could be covered by the federal funding set the Army Corps of Engineers, which will fund aside for the beach project. Any sand taken 65 percent of the cost. The initiative would from New Pass has to be alternated between pump close to 1.2 million cubic yards of sand the city of Sarasota and Longboat Key under onto the beach. The big challenge has been a longstanding agreement. Laird Wreford (left) addresses the County Commission and Longboat Key Town Commission as County Attorney Stephen DeMarsh (center) and County Administrator Randall Reid listen. Photo by Norman Schimmel

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