The St. Johns County Commission approved financial assistance for the Ponte Vedra beach restoration scheme with a 3-2 majority vote on Tuesday, July 17.
This will allow the county’s preferred engineering firm, Taylor Engineering, to begin the necessary preliminary work.
“The county will now hire a coastal engineer right away to begin work on our dredging site to get sand back on our beach. The county is also providing the initial $200,000 toward this effort. Commissioners Paul Waldron, Henry Dean and Jay Morris voted in favor and Commissioners Jeb Smith and Jimmy Johns voted against,” the Save Ponte Vedra Beach organization stated in their announcement.
“One very important future step is coming – the bed tax increase vote, so that tourists help pay for the restoration of the beach. We desperately need this to be approved.”
“So our next steps will involve continued efforts to get our project fully funded. This will include the commissioners addressing the bed tax for the county’s northern beaches (including PVB), potentially in one of the August commissioners’ meetings,” the organization said.
The motion was backed by Commission Chair Henry Dean, who expressed confidence that the funding, which will be drawn from the Beach Management Reserve Fund, would eventually be repaid.