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City discusses flooding created by storm water

McMinnville officials are considering a survey of storm water issues within the city and what can be done to correct flooding in certain areas. 

Vice Mayor Everett Brock suggested a study be done on storm water runoff.

“We are about to come into a windfall of ARP money to the tune of about $4 million,” said Brock. “One of the things I’d like to spend that money on is a study to find out what we can do with the storm water we are getting. It’s going to continue to get worse as we go. As the city grows, as we put more buildings down and as we pave more, it’s only going to become worse.” 

Flooding of low-lying properties within the city has been a long-standing issue. Residents routinely request Board of Mayor and Aldermen assistance in finding a solution.

“I know we don’t have any legal liability to do this, but we owe it to our citizens to try and stop the situation,” said Brock. 

During past discussions on the subject, city attorney Tim Pirtle has advised city officials against assuming the obligation of storm water management for private property owners because any attempts to mitigate could potentially make the city legally liable. Specifically, if those effort worsen the situation or result in diverting storm water onto the property of another resident.

Brock continued, “When we receive the ARP money and begin deciding what we want to use it for, I would like to do a storm water study – get licensed engineers to survey, on a citywide basis, and see what we can do.”

When asked, city administrator Nolan Ming said there are at least five areas where storm water runoff issues have been brought to the city’s attention.

A meeting of the city Water and Sewer Committee will be set to discuss the survey recommendation.