Commissioner updates readers on Port activities

Jay Bliss, a Historic City News supporter and reader, keeps us updated on activities on the St Augustine Port, Waterway and Beach District where he serves as our commissioner in Seat 5; he has provided his notes of events at yesterday’s meeting — Tuesday, October 16, 2012.

Port has $1.7M available funds.

Summer Haven River restoration permits are imminent; funding for actual restoration is the top priority for that group, diligently led by Linda Ginn.

Salt Run “No Wake” markers are being restored; USCG’s Local Notice to Mariners lists day marker #1 as missing, #16 as damaged.

The St Augustine Inlet Channel dredging created questions. St Johns County engineer A. Ames affirmed that dredging for beach nourishment had been accomplished to 32 feet in the dredging sites in the inlet.

Our un-jettied inlet channel might be freshly dredged, but it is constantly subject to wind and wave. Many areas seem to have re-filled.

In the absence of a post-dredge survey, county, city, Port, and USCG are determining best possible buoy positions for safe navigation.

Port heard from USCG LCDR R. Butts and his team of AToN (Aids to Nav) experts who now have their large buoy tender to attend to the demands of the inlet.

Buoy 5A is a temporary replacement. Boaters in the inlet must sight and honor that mark; there is continued shoaling to the S of 5A.

Harbormaster S. Adukiewicz spoke of a sport fish boat drawing 2 feet, who reported 6 feet under his keel at some area within the channel entrance.

Navigational marking of the inlet is an ongoing challenge for the Port and USCG.

Tim Ford from South Davis Shores presented data on shoaling that prevents access to the hurricane hole at Inlet Drive. $34000 might affect a dredged cure for an undetermined time. Board has that request under advisement and awaits further info.

FIND (Florida Inland Nav. District) Commissioner Carl Blow reports that dredging is wrapping up in the ICW north of the Vilano Beach Bridge, and the pump stations sending beach quality sands to St Augustine Beach are shutting down.
The Regatta of Lights, our Christmas nighttime boating extravaganza on the bayfront, will be funded in part with a Port contribution of $5000. That effort and showing off the Port is overseen by the St Augustine Yacht Club.

The SAYC will host their Ducky Derby to support their junior sailing program, open to the public. Fun and sailing events at the Lighthouse ramp and the SAYC on Saturday October 27th between 5:00 p.m. and 9:00 p.m.

St Johns County Fire and Rescue J. Sneed made a presentation to the board in appreciation of Port’s contribution of funds for two versatile personal watercrafts that see action almost daily rescuing small vessels and swimmers in distress.

FWC’s M. Pedonti reports stone crab season has started, the traps are out and the harvest is good: claws only.

Official minutes of the St Augustine Port Waterway and Beach meeting held October 16 will be available soon on their website

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