Berlin Flooding Report Delayed Till Next Month

BERLIN – The final stormwater management report by the
Army Corps of Engineers expected at any time has been pushed back another

“It’s been delayed because of staff shortages on their
end. We’re now expected to get the draft in April,” said Berlin Administrative
Director Linda Bambary.

The town will hold an informal work session, Bambary said,
to go over the report. The final draft will be due at the end of the month.

Ongoing flooding problems in the town prompted the study.
Henry Robinson, a West Street property owner, has had a long-running conflict
with the town over stormwater management measures taken on his property.

The town added a swale to his property, dividing it in
two, he said, and preventing access to one part.

“I don’t feel like I should have to pay taxes on land I
can’t use,” Robinson told the Mayor and Council last Monday night. “It was put
there against my will.”

Robinson made some suggestions to resolve the issues over
his property. He put forth a proposal to add a pipe to one side of his
property, where a ditch used to be, and relocate another.

Bambary said that the addition of a pipe to one side of
the property and moving an existing pipe eight inches deeper is in the Corps’
draft report.

“It would do everything,” Robinson said. “Water needs to
go somewhere. Where the swale is now, it’s like putting a drain at the top of
the bathtub.”

Marie Velong, Robinson’s neighbor, reminded the council
that one pipe installed in September was put in eight inches too high.

“What’s so hard about digging a hole and putting a pipe
in?” she asked.

However, Bambary said the solution might not be as simple
as that. “I think we still need another pipe,” she said.

Flooding issues have plagued the town for years, prompting
a comprehensive look at the entire area.

Council Vice President Gee Williams said the town owed it
to the citizens to get moving on some solutions. “They’ve been more than
patient,” he said.

The design and survey work would run around $6,000,
Bambary later said, but she did not have any figures for installation.

The town will not be able to pipe the entire perimeter of
the property, another of Robinson’s suggestions.

not going to be able to pipe the back. It just won’t work,” said Bambary.