City of Homer
Port / Harbor Telephone (907) 235-3160
4350 Homer Spit Road Fax (907) 235-3152
Homer, Alaska 99603-8005 E-mail email@example.com
Web Site http://port.ci.homer.ak.us
TO: HOMER CITY COUNCIL & CITY MANAGER WALT WREDE
FROM: BRYAN HAWKINS, PORT DIRECTOR/HARBORMASTER
SUBJECT: DREDGE MATERIALS MANAGEMENT FOR THE CITY OF HOMER PORT & HARBOR
DATE: JANUARY 18, 2011
The City and the Army Corps of Engineers work cooperatively to maintain a safe navigation channel from the harbor entrance to the Load and Launch ramp. Also the Corps works with the USCG to maintain operating depths at the Cutter Hickory berth. The City is responsible for the disposal of the dredge materials created from these efforts.
Past averages for annual quantities of materials are approximately 13,000 cubic yards. Due to isostatic rebound, rebound from the 1964 earthquake and normal sedimentary transport 2010 harbor surveys conducted for the Corps in the navigation channel from the fuel floats to approximately JJ float, show that we are above our operating depths in the harbor and additional dredging will be required to maintain project depth. Early estimates are that this additional dredging could create as much as 20,000 more cubic yards to our quantities for 2011.
The City, Coast Guard and Corps have also been working on a special project that concerns the Cutter Hickory’s berth which will bring an additional 10,000 cubic yards into the system for disposal. All total we may be looking at 40,000 cubic yards or more of dredge materials for 2011.
You may have already noted in the handouts the Corps maintenance project limits outline an approximately 100’ channel from the harbor entrance to the Load and Launch Ramp. The remainder of the harbor basin is our responsibility to maintain. I have made inquires with the Corps, who administers the dredge contract, as to whether the Port would be able to add to the work scope allowing us to bring harbor basin back into project depth by using the dredge while its on the job in the harbor. My contact person said that this has been done in the past on other projects. I will ask for a confirmation in writing.
If the additional dredging from the fuel floats to the area of JJ float in a 100’ channel may produce an additional 20,000 cyds, then you can see that it looks as though we may have a big job ahead of us in order to fulfill our responsibilities for maintaining the proper operating depths in the basin.
We will need to hire a survey completed for the areas in the harbor outside of the Corps navigation channel in order to estimate total scope of materials to be removed and we won’t have any actual quantity or cost estimates until the survey is completed. As of now I believe we will be able to take this on section by section over the course of many years. However you cut it though, we are looking at much higher numbers when it comes to our responsibilities for dredge materials disposed in the future.
Possible fiscal impacts: I have some preliminary cost estimates of between 8 and 10 dollars per yard to the dewatering site. I wouldn’t hazard any guesses at this time but there will be a heavy fiscal impact to the Enterprise in order to maintain the harbors operating depths.
Past method of dredge materials disposal: Dredge materials may be used only on the Spit either for City projects or sold to private business owners for use on the Spit. This is a very limited market and we have nearly reached the saturation point. In an effort to take a proactive tack on this issue, the Port and City are currently seeking permits for beneficial uses of dredge materials on the Homer Spit. This is a multi pronged approach at using these materials in beneficial ways on the Spit for beach re-nourishment and two build-up projects that would be used to create additional parking in the boardwalk areas on the Spit.
In light of the results of the latest harbor soundings and the spike in dredge materials quantities, I have research the Ordinance dictating that materials may not be removed from the Spit. It is my belief that the required annual maintenance dredging of our Port and Harbor is a completely different issue from the one that prompted the original and then the amended Ordinance of 1998 titled Excavation of the Homer Spit Beach.
Dredge materials management could easily be lined out in a prioritized check list starting with:
1. Beach re-nourishment
2. Build-up projects, land creation benefitting City of Homer Port and Harbor
3. Materials for sale on the Spit to land owners or leases for use on the Spit
4. Stock pile of materials for emergency erosion repairs and for small quantity sales for use on the Spit – 6 to 10K cubic yards
5. When items 1-4 are fulfilled, RFP for sale off the Spit as fill material. Proceeds from sale would be used only for Enterprise Operational costs.
Create a new Ordinance dictating allowed uses of dredge materials from the City of Homer’s Port and Harbor annual maintenance dredging program.
I would be happy to answer any questions on this subject.
Attached: Overviews of Harbor Channel and Entrance with Limits Outlined