Flood damages Groveport golf course bridge

Recent flooding on Little Walnut Creek badly damaged the golf cart suspension bridge over the creek at The Links at Groveport golf course.

Because of the damage, Golf Director Tom Walker said the course has been temporarily re-routed to allow for 18 hole play  since several holes cannot be reached without the bridge.

At Groveport Village Council’s April 14 meeting, Village Administrator Jon Crusey told council it had three options:

•repair the bridge at an estimated cost of $26,200;

•put in a new bridge at an estimated cost of $400,000; or

•permanently re-route the golf course so the bridge would not be needed at an estimated cost of $50,000.

Council appeared to wince at the cost of a new bridge.

"We need to get streets reconstructed that we’ve been promising people we were going to do and a bike path built," said Councilwoman Jean Ann Hilbert. "Let’s just repair the bridge now and look at it again later."

Council asked village administrative officials to see if they could get lower estimates than the $26,200 to repair the bridge. Council could consider legislation at its April 21 meeting to authorize repairs to the bridge.

Stormwater management policy

Council approved an updated stormwater management policy to help protect the area’s waterways.

Groveport is situated among four major creeks – Little Walnut, Big Walnut, Blacklick, and Alum, as well as several smaller streams and drainage ditches – which are affected by stormwater runoff.

The updates, driven by Ohio EPA requirements, include five main points:

•Drainage easements – This would clarify easements and strengthen the village’s ability to inspect and enforce maintenance obligations on property owners.

•Stream corridor protection – This involves establishing a conservation (preservation) zone alongside streams affecting developing lands. Farst said this change would establish a stream corridor boundary buffer zone that would be required to be set aside as land around it develops.

•Operation and maintenance of stormwater drainage facilities – This would clarify the operation, routine, and remedial maintenance responsibilities.

•Enforcement of operation and maintenance – This would involve establishing abatement procedures and a notification process to correct improper drainage. It would also establish a process for the village to recover the cost to fix improper drainage from a responsible owner who fails to do so.

•Illicit discharge and obstruction – This would prohibit illicit discharge into the drainage system and allow for the removal of an unnatural obstruction in the streamway.

Annexing canal lands

Council heard the first reading of an ordinance to annex 42.8 acres of former Ohio and Erie Canal lands and adjoining railroad right of way that extend from Hamilton Road east to Rager Road.

Village officials noted the annexation would allow Groveport to connect with Canal Winchester’s border at Rager Road and block the city of Columbus from annexing land down between the two communities and growing to the south. It would also allow property owners east of Groveport, located north and south of the proposed annexation, to annex to Groveport without having to include adjoining property owners.

Income tax revenues up

Finance Director Ken Salak reported that Groveport’s income tax revenues for March were $1.2 million, which he said was a new record. The figure represents a 59 percent increase over March of 2007. For the year Groveport has received $3.94 million in income tax revenues, up 30.6 percent over this time in 2007.

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