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Three Pinellas Beaches To Get $30 Million For Sand Renourishment


Three Pinellas County beaches being eroded by the Gulf of Mexico are taking one step closer toward being restored. The $30 million will be used to help restore beaches at Sand Key, Upham Beach and Treasure Island.

The money is coming from the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers and the state Department of Environmental Protection, with the remaining 20 percent come from taxes on Pinellas hotel rooms. The beaches have been undergoing heavy erosion, particularly from Hurricane Hermine last year.

State Rep. Kathleen Peters of Treasure Island spoke about the importance of beach renourishment during a recent edition of Florida Matters.

"If we don't keep our beaches nourished appropriately, just like on the east coast of Florida when Matthew came in, not only did we lose the infrastructure of roads, but we lost the infrastructure of telecommunications, power lines. And so if we don't protect that infrastructure, it's an economic issue.

A bill awaiting Gov. Scott's signature - or possible veto - would mean another $50 million for beach renourishment.


Steve Newborn is a WUSF reporter and producer at WUSF covering environmental issues and politics in the Tampa Bay area.
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