Billy's Creek dredging approved, impact on pollution unclear
FORT MYERS - Five years after first looking for it, the city of Fort Myers has a $775,000 grant in place to dredge Billy's Creek.
Combined with city funding, it means $1 million so that Fort Myers can get started on the removal of decades of sentiment that has settled in the canal, making it more difficult for the creek to handle stormwater during times of flooding emergencies.
Fort Myers has been looking for the funding for several years, but buoyed by growing attention to water issues, and especially to an abundance of nutrients in the water that feed harmful algae blooms, the funding was included in the state budget.
State Sen. Lizbeth Benacquisto and state Rep. Heather Fitzenhagen, both Fort Myers Republicans, pressed for inclusion of the grant funding in the state budget passed by the Legislature earlier this year.