Photo courtesy of the Ventura Port District
Photos taken before and after last year’s dredge at Ventura’s Harbor Cove South Beach show the dramatic difference dredging makes.
There is good news ahead for our safe harbor. Thanks to the efforts of U.S. Congresswoman Julia Brownley (D-California), the Ventura Port District has secured ample federal funding for upcoming dredging efforts at Ventura Harbor.
The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers’ recently released work plan for fiscal year 2020 includes $1.625 million for this year’s maintenance dredging of Ventura Harbor. Additionally, the proposed budget for fiscal year 2021 was released – and it includes $4.795 million for next year’s maintenance dredging.
The proposed budget represents a positive recognition at the federal level of Ventura Harbor’s significant role in support of the West Coast commercial fishing industry.
The dredging removes the hazardous buildup of sand and other material from coastal storms. Without dredging, this buildup would result in dangerously shallow water at the Harbor entrances.
The corps’ contractor, Seattle-based Manson Construction Co., began the maintenance dredging of the Ventura Harbor channel on Feb. 6; the pre-dredge survey indicated about 360,000 cubic yards were available to be dredged. The federal funds currently available are adequate for that level of effort.
The Ventura Port District works year-round to secure funding for the annual dredging project, from local elected officials and those in Washington, to ensure that Ventura Harbor is safe for commercial and recreational boats.
As usual, this year’s project will cause no Harbor closures.