Thursday, Dec. 9

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West-side flow study approved     Send a link to a friend

[DEC. 9, 2004]  The decision to spend nearly $10,000 on a study that measures water flow on Lincoln's west side was not made easily last Monday night. Lincoln City Council members gnashed through the issue, weighing for and against it, until ultimately deciding that it would need to be done anyway.

Stonebridge subdivision residents have been asking for assistance with the flash flooding that strikes their subdivision frequently. The subdivision, which sits in back of the Elks golf course and is surrounded by farm fields that all channel rainwater through their subdivision, was annexed into the city after it was built.

A flow study is an important step in understanding the flow of water in the area. At the last council meeting, sewer system manager Grant Eaton had an engineer from Donohue and Associates of Champaign explain how a conceptual-level report would provide the necessary information and proposed solutions that might resolve the issue in the area.

On Monday night Alderman Buzz Busby made a motion to deny the study.

Alderman Dave Armbrust responded to the denial, saying, "This isn't the direction that I thought we were going."

Busby answered, "From what our city attorney has told us and what I found out from Mr. Eaton, we don't feel that we're responsible for Stonebridge."

City attorney Bill Bates said, "I've read some opinions since that time that may certainly cause concern to me about that position." He now feels the city should take some kind of action to investigate or come up with some plan of remediation; otherwise, he expects that the residents of Stonebridge will litigate.

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Alderman Marty Neitzel asked why we had the flow study planned in the first place if we aren't going to act on it.

Eaton responded that the council asked for what it would cost, and a flow study is only way to solve that problem.

Alderman Verl Prather favored getting the study done so we would know what might be done and what it will cost.

Neitzel pointed out that the study needs to be done whether it benefits Stonebridge or not, as it will be needed for the development of Fifth Street, which is being planned.

Alderman Patrick Madigan also favored getting the information and the options to possibly help the subdivision rather than litigation.

Prather added that he had received calls from the residents and wanted to have something to answer to them.

The motion to do the study passed, with one "nay" from Alderman Busby.

[Jan Youngquist]

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