I have always considered myself very fortunate to be able to live here in Homosassa. I started visiting the area when I first moved to Florida in 1982. Love it.
But I think I might have been taking it for granted. Our river is dying. Along with most of the rivers and springs in the state. If all of us naturecoasters want to continue enjoying our water-based lifestyle, we now need to work together to reverse that trend!
In November 2016, the Homosassa River Restoration Project (HRRP), an all-volunteer 501 c3 non-profit organization, was created for this reason. HRRP is a public/private partnership that will be cleaning up the Homosassa River and its canals.
I wrote about Old Homosassa Goes to Tallahassee back in April on NatureCoaster.com. Both groups, “Access to the River” and HRRP had bills passed and money in the state budget. Unfortunately, the governor vetoed the money for HRRP.
Steve Minguy, president of the Homosassa River Restoration Project, is not giving up. Both Senator Simpson and Represenative Massullo have been very supportive of the project and continue to guide the groups to get state funding but HRRP is not putting the project on hold. They are not waiting for next year to ask for money from the state. They are moving forward.
Steve sent the following email out to concerned citizens and businesses:
We need your help! Despite the Governors veto last June we never stopped trying and are actually ready to begin the studies and surveys needed to permit the first 25 acres of river and canals. In-water activity must be complete before manatee season so time is critical. This would give us a shovel ready project to present before this years Legislature and instead of just asking for permitting money we will actually be requesting cleanup funds. We could have divers in the water by spring!! The area for this first phase would include the river and canals east of Fishbowl Drive and proceeding west on the river (downstream) to just past the west (second) Blue Water Canal and would include all of the Blue Water Canal.
The mission of HRRP is to restore and protect the Homosassa River. Let’s do it!