MADEIRA BEACH, Fla. (WFLA) – Madeira Beach’s Mayor John Hendricks called on Pinellas County Commissioners for help with sand coming into John’s Pass. The mayor said that sand is blocking drains, creating safety hazards, and impacting businesses.
Pinellas County Bureau Reporter Christine McLarty reached out to the county to find out if they’re willing to help.
“I’m here to say thank you for what you have done and to ask for your continued help on this,” Hendricks said to Pinellas County Commissioners at their board meeting Tuesday.
Mayor Hendricks said a number of studies have been done about the issue of sand flowing into John’s Pass, but they’re hopeful the next study will define the problem and shine a light on a solution.
“Hopefully we can get a plan together. We need your folk’s help technically and financially,” Mayor Hendricks said.
“The mayor asked for the county’s technical and financial help, is that something you guys are discussing?” McLarty asked Pinellas County Administrator Barry Burton on Wednesday.
“I committed to [some financial] assistance and to the study,” Burton responded.
He continued that the county is complying, agreeing to lead the study and pay for part of the $30,000 bill.
However, Burton said there are six agencies involved, and he wants them to pay their part too. Burton said the involved agencies are the city, county, F-DOT, Hubbards Marina, a private property owner, and the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers.
He said the U.S. Army Corp. of Engineers already said they won’t help financially.
“They said they do not have a program for that, therefore they will not contribute,” Burton adding that the project is important. “This is a large tourist attraction, an economic engine for the county it certainly goes to the quality of life,” Burton said.
Burton said now, we wait for the study.
“The study really talks about a long term solution,” Burton said.
Mayor Hendricks told 8 On Your Side he’s thrilled the county is agreeing to help financially, calling it “A huge deal”.
The study will be complete in six months. 8 On Your Side will stay on the story.
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