Huntington Deluge Occurs Before Council Passes Storm water Resolution

Updated 4 years ago by Tony Rutherford HuntingtonNews.Net Reporter
Cabell County Democratic Women meet with Mayor Steve Williams
Cabell County Democratic Women meet with Mayor Steve Williams

“What an ironic bit of timing”, Mayor Steve Williams told Huntington City Council prior to the vote on authorization for a Stormwater director at the Monday, July 22 council meeting.

The vote came only hours following a summer deluge that left the usual Huntington streets and viaducts unable to handle the runoff of water falling from the sky. Streets, avenues and viaducts backed up.

One citizen during Good and Welfare how downtown flooding of the Eighth and Tenth Street viaducts necessitated alternate access. And, he moves around in a mobile wheelchair.

Angie Bracy, one of the mayor’s assistants, became stuck in overflowing water, while running an errand prior to the pre-council  gathering at the Mayor’s Conference Room.

Council chairman, Mark Bates, drove a long winding detour filled route, too.

“I short cut through Fairfax to Woodlands where there [was] a tree and power lines over the road, so I had to back up, go to Ricketts Road before coming back down to Washington Blvd to home”, Bates explained, adding, “To get here tonight, it was very backed up and the water was starting to come up in the underpasses again.”

 As the Mayor acknowledged, “it’s fairly dangerous after a storm to go North to South or East to West. We have to correct. We are under a mandate [to do so].,, we have work to do.”

Although the ordinance passed by council only authorizes the storm water director and coordinator positions from money in the current budget.

The Mayor has pledged to bring additional components before council in the fall. However, a citizen warned council members and the public that bills for a storm water utility would be forthcoming.

Cost estimates to fully separate sanitary sewer and storm water infrastructure range from $500 to $800 million dollars.

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