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Flooded ditch gobbling up yards, residents tell mayor

By Jason C. Mattox

Acorn Lane residents are hoping for help with a flooding problem along the Sand Creek Ditch.

City leaders said Tuesday they would discuss the matter with representatives of the Natural Resources Conservation Service.

Neighborhood spokesman Ed Woodall told aldermen during a meeting Tuesday they were concerned with flooding when the ditch overflows.

“When we did get a grant, they told us they weren’t interested in building it up,” Mayor Jerry Autrey said. “They just want to maintain what’s there.”

Woodall suggested the city consider dredging or digging out the bottom of the ditch.

“We had a car in the neighborhood ruined because of the flooding,” he said.

Resident Sarah McCollough explained that the water got high enough in the street to get into her exhaust and total out her vehicle.

“[NRCS] would not approve that area, but any time we get a big rain we can apply for grants,” Autrey said.

Other residents said the amount of water is causing sewage to come up into the streets.

“At one time the banks were in better shape, but we are starting to lose our banks now. And some of us had to have trees removed,” Woodall said. “There are holes in the edges of yards now because of the erosion.

“If this is allowed to continue, our houses are going to be on the edge.”

Engineer Billy Grantham of Mendrop-Wages, asked for evidence to support the city in any application to NRCS.

“I’d like to get copies of the pictures because the more information we can get together, the easier it is to convince a government agency there is a problem,” he said.  “It’s not a quick fix, but there are some options we can explore.”

Grantham will examine the area of the ditch in question and report back to the mayor and board of aldermen at their meeting Oct. 6.

No action was taken.

In other board business:

•Aldermen voted to re-bid for sprinkler systems on the Downtown Square, at City Hall and the Batesville Police Department.

•Aldermen voted to approve the 2010 budget.

•Emily Snider was moved from part-time to full-time status as a deputy clerk in City Hall.