Photo: Gulf Power

“The city has many potential ways to pay for placing overhead electrical lines and other utility lines within Destin underground, staff told the City Council on Monday.

While the council discussed the funding options, it made no concrete decisions.

The undergrounding of utility lines along U.S. Highway 98 and throughout the city is a project that Destin officials say would beautify the city and lead to fewer storm-caused power outages.

Currently, the city is in the final phase of negotiating a new franchise agreement with Gulf Power for electricity services, according to Destin Finance Director Bragg Farmer. Items being negotiated include a price to underground the company’s power lines, as well as other utility lines attached to power poles, in Destin.

While placing all the lines underground will take at least two decades, city officials for now are focused on exploring possible funding sources to pay for the placements during the next 10 years or so. Funding must be identified and secured before issuing a revenue note/bond that would pay for the project upfront, according to Farmer…”

— Tony Judnich, The Destin Log

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