Boaters Frustrated With Slow Pace Of Rebuilding Harbors

The Biloxi Small Craft Harbor is one step closer to reconstruction. Bids were accepted for demolition and rebuilding of the harbor. But the move forward is not satisfying one boater.

"Every time I have talked to somebody they keep saying they're waiting for FEMA money to get it all done. Although there are some things they probably could have done on their own without waiting for the money, and then they can go back and argue with FEMA about the price." says boater Corrie Eleuterius.

Eleuterius has been a shrimper since 1983.

The argument between city officials and FEMA is on the cost to rebuild the Small Craft Harbor. Biloxi officials say it will cost about six million dollars; FEMA puts the cost at three million. But while leaders argue over price tags, boater Corrie Eleuterius says he has a business to run.

"I come back here after the harbor. I hired me a train truck. I got me a diver, and I cleaned out my slips so I could go back to work. I didn't wait for the city to do it or for FEMA to do it or for anybody else to do it. I did it myself," Eleuterius said.

Several other boaters in south Mississippi have the same attitude. They say they are doing whatever it takes to keep business afloat instead of waiting to see signs of rebuilding at the Harbor.

"We've waited two years to get it done, one more week is not going to matter," Eleuterius said.

Biloxi public affairs director Vincent Creel says there are three bids in to repair the harbor. City leaders are moving forward to review the bids to see if they qualify. However, there is no word on when a bid will be awarded.