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March 21, 2019

3/14/2019 10:45:00 AM
Hutsonville looking at flood solutions
Daily News

Hutsonville Village Board continues to look at ways to relieve flooding in several parts of the village.

During Tuesday night's meeting resident Stan Stevens came to the board to voice concerns about the increased flooding in the Hill Crest Street area on the north side of town. Stevens said the amount of flooding seems to get worse after every rain, and local residents would like the village or someone to see what can be done.

Over the last several months the village has been looking at the problem and talking with Hutsonville Township and others about possible remedies. It is believed that landscape chanes, field drainage and farming techniques let a greater volume of water flow downhill. Infrastructure that was adequate 20 or 30 years ago is no longer able to handle the volume of water and upgrades need to be made.

What and where upgrades will have the greatest effect is what needs to be evaluated. Cost, equipment, ability to do the work and private property ownership also have to be figured into the equation.

Now that weather is breaking, the board authorized Rob Plew to contact Crawford County Highway Department and County Engineer Justin Childress to help evaluate the situation and see what level of work they may be able to do.

In a related matter, the Illinois Department of Natural Resources was making a flood plain survey of the village and noticed a new building in the 300 block of North Rose that is in the flood plain and floodway. The IDNR has no record of a permit request to construct a building in that area as required by law, and asked village officials if they have issued a permit. The village has not issued a permit and had no real knowledge of the building.

Mayor Tina Callaway said letters have been sent to the property owners informing them that permits are needed from the IDNR before the village can issue a permit in a floodway. Callaway went on to explain that if a permit is not obtained or the building is not removed, its construction could endanger the village's floodplain status and resident's ability to get flood insurance.

A recent rate increase by the Robinson Palestine Water Commission on wholesale water has sparked the interest of other rural water companies to approach Hutsonville and other municipalities about purchasing water from alternative sources. Callaway reported that E J Water through the Eaton Water District did approach the village to discuss connecting water to the village. The village continues to look at several nuisance properties as health and safety concerns. A property in the 500 block of South Pleasant was issued several citations for trash and dogs at large recently. A property in the 500 block of North Main is being demolished by new owners, and efforts are being made to clarify ownership of the old grade school following recent tax sales. Callaway reported the village is continuing to work with the owner of a property in the 200 block of East Chestnut. Callaway explained that while legal action is available it is expensive. Callaway said she has talked with the owner and would like to see money that would be used to pay for legal action go towards helping with the actual demolition of the house on the property. She will continue to report on the progress.

The United Way Day of Caring is scheduled for the week of June 11 and the village is again looking at projects.

The Hutsonville Community Club annual Egg Hunt is scheduled for Saturday, April 13 at 10 a.m.

The next scheduled meeting will be Tuesday, April 9.

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