(Posted July 26, 2017)
By Kristy Zurbrick, Madison Editor
Heavy rainfall earlier this month resulted in flooding that damaged homes and cars. The city of London is waiving some of its trash pick-up and drop-off fees to help reduce clean-up costs for area residents.
“The city understands the hardship that so many of our citizens have faced due to the recent flooding,” said Mayor Patrick Closser at the July 20 city council meeting. “The financial impact of losing personal property can seem overwhelming. We know that those impacted have been working hard to clean and repair their properties.”
The city is waiving additional pick-up fees on all residents’ sanitation bills for July 12 through July 21. The same goes for fees charged to drop off trash at the city’s transfer station during that time period.
“When everyone receives their bill for trash pick-up (for July 12-21), there should only be the normal base rate with no extra charges,” Closser said.
Billing questions can be directed to the Board of Public Utilities, (740) 852-1867.
The week of July 9, an estimated 12 inches of rain fell in London over a 72-hour period, including 3.5 inches in one hour on July 13.
“With this amount of rain, the creeks—which are fed by our storm sewer—in our area were overwhelmed,” Closser said. “The city of London and my administration is continuously working and researching ways to make improvements.”
Council member Dick Minner said he’s seen even worse flooding in years past.
“I think we should try to help correct the situation. It won’t be easy and it won’t be cheap, but we need to do it,” he said.
Council member Rex Castle noted that the city clears its streams of restrictive vegetation every 10 to 15 years. He said it might be time to do it again, though he acknowledged that 12 inches of rain is a lot of rain no matter how clear the streams are.
Charles Reese, a resident of Jacqueline Drive, wants to see something done about the flooding that happens in his neighborhood. He said four cars in his area were damaged beyond repair due to the recent flooding.
He also said residents in the area received no flood warning, even though fire and police personnel were on the street at the time.
“Part of their jobs is saving property, and they didn’t save anything—not on our end,” Reese said.
Another issue that comes with heavy rainfall is standing water and mosquitoes.
“As a whole, London is a very flat area with many low-laying spots. Unfortunately, some of these areas are in London’s FEMA flood plain map and are most likely to be hit the hardest,” Closser said.
The week of July 16, city crews sprayed for mosquitoes in the areas that were hit the hardest by the recent downpours, including the bike trail, Lincoln to Toland, Midway Street, Center Street, High Street, Chrisman Avenue, Walnut Street, and Jacqueline Drive.
The next regular London city council meeting is at 6:30 p.m. Aug. 3 in city council chambers, 6 E. Second St.
Other committee and board meetings are slated as follows: parks and recreation, Aug. 1, 6 p.m.; zoning appeals, 7 p.m. Aug. 1; finance, 6 p.m. Aug. 7; historic review, 4 p.m. Aug. 8; civil service, 7 p.m. Aug. 9; public service, 6 p.m. Aug. 10; planning commission, 7 p.m. Aug. 10; public safety, 7 p.m. Aug. 14; tree commission, 5 p.m. Aug. 15; city properties, 7 p.m. Aug. 23; board of public utilities, 6:30 p.m. Aug. 24. All meetings take place in council chambers, except public safety, which takes place at the London Police Department.