Public utilities committee to meet, discuss water problems

Published 9:29 am Tuesday, August 4, 2009

IRONTON — The Ironton public utilities committee will meet in special session this evening to discuss the backflow valves that are being installed to help alleviate flooding problems in the south side of the city.

After recent heavy rains, some residents in that area have complained to city officials about water and raw sewage that has backflowed into their homes.

City officials have agreed to install extendable backwater valves aimed at preventing future sewage backup because of a plugged sewer system or excess system or groundwater flooding.

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“We want to set down some parameters, decide who gets one immediately and establish a list of who gets one. That is what we’re trying to do,” councilman Leo Johnson said.

One valve has already been installed, another is being installed. The city is footing the bill for the valves and valve installation.

The meeting is open to the public and Johnson said residents affected by the flooding will have an opportunity to speak.

“We know people are frustrated. If they want to come and voice their frustration, we’ll take that, fine. We understand people are very frustrated,” Johnson said.

He said some residents have told him they have dealt with this problem for years but not to this extent, while other residents have said they have never had to contend with this kind of backup before now.

Meanwhile, city officials are looking into what is causing the problem in the first place. Inspections of the system show some tree roots have invaded the system but this still does not account for the backups. The root problem is being dealt with, city councilman Kevin Waldo said.

“We’re trying to figure out some method by which we can remedy the problem,” Waldo said.

The meeting will be at 6 p.m. in council chambers on the third floor of the Ironton City Center.