Drainage Clearing Delayed

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The $4 million project to clear out some of Central’s off-road drainage is on hold over permitting issues. The city put the work out for bids in May but did not request approval from the Corps of Engineers until June, and that final approval has not yet been issued.
The drainage clearing contracts were awarded in June and work was to begin this past Monday, July 10th. The city has modified its request to the Corps of Engineers in order to avoid having to go through the formal permitting process for the disturbance of wetlands, and now awaits a response from the Corps.
On April 5th, days after Central homes flooded during a five-inch rain, Mayor Shelton stated that he intended to have 40 to 50 crews hired to begin clearing off-road drainage by April 7th. On April 14th the Mayor announced in a public meeting that he was not going to tell the people of Central to wait for drainage improvements.
Mayor Shelton was quoted in a television interview this week as saying that he hopes the work will begin next week, three months after the $4 million was appropriated for the project, and almost a year after the great flood of 2016. The bid package for the comprehensive drainage study promised by Mayor Shelton in 2014 was drafted and approved by the City Council in March, but has still not been advertised for bids.

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