St. Augustine’s marina and lighthouse pier should have more help soon, in the form of money, to recover from hurricane damage.
The Florida Inland Navigation District supported giving St. Augustine funding toward repairs of the St. Augustine Municipal Marina and the St. Augustine Lighthouse fishing pier, said Jim Piggott, the city of St. Augustine’s director of general services.
Piggott and others, including Commissioner Leanna Freeman, traveled to Daytona on Friday to ask for the district’s support.
The pier has been closed since Hurricane Matthew, and the marina took a heavy hit during Hurricane Irma.
The emergency FIND grants are intended to cover the cost of repairs that the Federal Emergency Management Agency won’t cover for the city, Piggott said. The city has applied for FEMA to reimburse 75 percent of the cost to repair both the marina and the pier, but it’s not clear yet what amount the city might received.
If it turns out that the city doesn’t need all of the FIND money, it will be returned, Piggott said.
The marina sustained about $2.5 million in damage and has close to 30 slips operating instead of the full 88, he said. The funds are needed to get the marina up to full strength and keep all of the marina employees, Piggott said.
The Lighthouse Park pier needs more than $396,000 in repairs, he said.
“All total the city is receiving close to $725,000 from FIND,” Piggott said.
FIND, an organization governed by state law, levies taxes to fund projects that improve the Atlantic Intracoastal Waterway, according to the district’s website.
The city competed with other hurricane-impacted areas to get the funding, Freeman said.
“What I think was important for the board members was that these two projects provide a lot of public access to the waterways and that they’re heavily used for the public,” she said.