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  ABC Water District Key Factor In Efforts To Improve Drainage  
  Projects Unlikely To Begin Until Next Year:   June 13, 2019 Edition  
      associate editor
      24 Boardman residents who attended a meeting of Township Trustees on Monday night learned that potential projects designed to alleviate surface water issues during peak rainfall periods will likely not get underway at least until next year.
      Trustees Larry Moliterno, Tom Costello and Brad Calhoun listened to concerns expressed by several of those residents for more than two hours, following heavy rainfalls on May 28 that caused surface water problems and closed three sections of Rt. 224, between Market St. and Tippecanoe Rd., and as well impacted businesses on the east end of the Greater Boardman Plaza.
      Before actual projects can begin, an engineering study and storm water master plan must be developed, Boardman Township Administrator Jason Loree said.
      Loree addressed Trustees as a representative of the ABC Water District, saying a master plan “will look at the entire watershed and storm line, before taking action on repairs and updates.” Cost of a study and master plan could be at least $300,000, if not more, Loree indicated, adding the water district currently has limited funding.
      Earlier this year, the water district imposed a fee on township residents. The fee will raise about $900,000 annually, not enough money to complete a study and master plan, and implement a construction program this year, Loree indicated.
      In addition to funding provided by the fee for the water district, Loree said funding for drainage issues could also be provided by state and federal sources. He said federal funding is unlikely and some Ohio Public Works emergency funds could be available after July 1.
      “We are in a pool to be considered for state funds,” Loree said, adding that Boardman Township “had major infrastructure damage to drainage lines and roadways, as well as homes and business” on May 28 when an estimated three inches or more of rain fell in a two-hour period.
      Federal funding could be considered, but only after an assessment is completed by the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA), Loree indicated.
      Eleven residents addressed Trustees on Monday night, expressing concerns that commercial companies blow grass clippings into roadways, too much blacktop in the townships exacerbates surface water flows, and the ‘Boardman Ditch’ can’t handle surface water flows during peak rainfall periods.
      Kathleen Cullum, 4012 Hudson Dr., complained “grass companies blow mountains of grass and tree leaves into sewers. They sit there for days.” Cullum expressed concern that nitrogen from grass clippings could impact water that flows into Mill Creek.
      Mark Fleetwood, 33 South Shore Dr., called for a moratorium on black-topping until a drainage study is completed, claiming some of the worst flooding on Market St. on May 28 was near the Sweeney car dealership “where there is a new retention system.”
      Fleetwood said he was looking for “more immediate action.”
      Bobbie Hosa, 6103 Glenwood Ave., said her property didn’t flood on May 28, but her yard mulch is ruined “everytime it rains.”
      Judy Peyko, 438 Jaronte Dr., claimed storm water and sewer water entered her home on May 28, charging that Mahoning County officials are unresponsive to her concerns, and her street and yard flooded so much she could go “white water rafting.”
      A major area of concern centered on the Boardman Ditch, that flows behind the Cadillac Drives, eventually emptying into Mill Creek.
      “That is one of the areas we want to look at,” Boardman Road Superintendent Marilyn Kenner said, adding the ditch was built in the 1930s by the Works Projects Administration. It was cleaned-up about 40 years ago utilizing summer workers employed by the Mahoning County Employment and Training Association.
      “The ditch is caving in,” Hosa said.
      Another area of concern expressed at Monday’s meeting was the Boardman Lake detention pond system. It gathers water flowing from Rt. 224, eventually releasing the flow in the Boardman Ditch.
      “We need to reconfigure that system and possibly talk to Ohio Edison about expanding it,” Kenner said.
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