CHARLOTTE COUNTY, Fla. - It's your money and Charlotte County leaders are trying to figure out how much more they need to clean a mucky waterway. Early last year, crews started dredging the Sunshine Lake and Sunrise Waterway in Port Charlotte.
The project was orginially tabbed for more than 2-million dollars. Crews have been working on this project for a year. Right now, the contractor is more than 80 days behind schedule. They've literally run into more than they thought while cleaning that water.
But at Tuesday's county meeting, they assured commisioners an additional one point one million dollars is enough to finish the work.
While there's noticeable improvement to this water...
"It's one big cluster mess," says Joanne Mulvaney.
Homeowners and county leaders are frustrated the clean-up is not only behind schedule, but also, that crews say it can't be finished unless they get more time and money.
"I thought we had an iron clad situation," says County Commissioner, Ken Doherty.
"This is not their first day at the rodeo, they knew what they were getting themselves into," adds county Commissioner Christopher Constance.
An estimated 66-thousand cubic yards of algae that hasn't stopped growing. Experts say that might explain why four different numbers have come back for just how much algae is in this water. But underneath all of it, is another challenge.
"It's inundated with debris, tires, rooflines, shingles, you name it," Mulvaney adds.
The contractor, ProLime Corporation has asked the county for an additional one point one million dollars and another six months to finish the job, a pricetag and timeline they're certain they can follow.
While it's a hefty amount, homeowners who live nearby say, they've dealt with this mucky mess long enough.
"How do you put a dollar figure on people's health? It smells, it stinks, its got toxins in there. How about taking the money and instead of putting it towards benches and curb and clean up this waterway!" Mulvaney says.
Leaders will discuss the latest timeline and cost at their upcoming workshop. They will vote on this at the next regular board meeting.