Americus Ditch ongoing problem for county

Ditch

Pipes, unconnected, popping from the ground have been an ongoing problem since the Americus Ditch project was constructed more than six years ago. The county roped off areas where the pipe was above ground with an eye on bringing in fill dirt this week.

Wes Locher
Published: Thursday, October 3, 2013 at 11:40 AM.

The Board of County Commissioners, with one notable exception, has insisted that the Americus Ditch project is a thing of the past.

To residents in the area, and the commissioner who serves them, it is an ever-present problem.

Last week pipes were again exposed, as residents called this paper to express frustration, revealing issues with how the pipes are connected and highlighting that a significant portion of the water flowing through the ditch is not reaching its proposed destination.

“It is a mess,” said resident Bill Koran told the BOCC during a meeting two months ago. “With heavy rains, my house has been flooded twice. I would like to know how this contract was awarded and how it was inspected. This project was not done correctly.

“Was the contractor qualified for this kind of project? And according to my research, Preble Rish designed and inspected the project and I think that is a bit like the fox guarding the hen house.”

According to county staff, the county has undertaken repairs of the project that number in the hundreds, from fixing pipes to, this week, placing fill dirt in areas where pipes have popped up, not fully connected, above ground.

This beyond the original price tag, which Clerk of Courts Becky Norris said at a recent BOCC meeting was over $1 million.



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