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Norriego Point needs help - Now
DESTIN -- Ten million dollars in BP funding is in the pipeline, but Destin City leaders say Norriego Point needs help now.
The city will spend some of its own money to jump-start a permanent fix for erosion problems, on the strip of land that protects Destin Harbor.
Channel Three's Laura Hussey is live on Destin Harbor to show us exactly what's happening on the point.
Behind me is the tip of Norriego Point, and you can definitely see the problem. That wall was installed to keep sand in place. Obviously sand is washing out from behind it every day.
On the other side of the point, sand is washing out from beneath the protective wall.
That's where phase one of the permanent armoring project will begin.
Capt. Cliff Atwell: "It's real important that they, as quickly as they can, stabilize this point and get a proper flow going so we won't keep having these problems with the shoaling."
Captains like Cliff Atwell face a tough and even dangerous job when sand from the point washes into the navigation channel.
Council members well aware of the problem voted to spend 43-thousand dollars to get phase one of a permanent armoring project started.
Even though DEP has approved more than ten million in BP funding, the money's not available yet.
Atwell says for 43 grand, the city's making a smart investment.
Cliff: "The dredging they did last year lasted six to eight months. We really need the point stabilized and have it fixed properly, so every year the city's not spending 700-thousand or a million dollars, just to keep our point open here in the harbor"
Another sheet pile metal wall will be put in, extending farther than the temporary one.
Sand will be dumped behind it to stabilize the point.
The spending that's been approved will cover permits and engineering.
Captain George Eller says the city is on the right track.
Capt. George Eller: "The city knows, and i think ninety percent of our residents know, that this working harbor right here and the fishing fleet is the heart and soul, without question."
This 43 thousand won't be the end of the city's spending on phase one.
The work itself will cost two or three-hundred thousand, and to get it done now, they'll have to pay for it.