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Town wants floodplain study

Jennie Lay

Following up on discrepancies over floodplain designation, the Oak Creek Town Board will consider approval of a contract to conduct a flood plain study for the Arthur Avenue neighborhood.

Mayor Kathy “Cargo” Rodeman said she assumed the study had been completed after initial negotiations in late June, but as of the end of the business day Wednesday, she still was trying to sort out the proposed bid.

At the Town Board meeting June 24, resident Brett KenCairn told the Town Board that he found out his proposed construction site, along with several other homes along Arthur Avenue, was in an “A” zone flood designation by the Federal Emergency Management Agency. Anyone who wants to build in such a zone has to prove it won’t flood with a flood engineering survey and an ensuing “letter of map amendment” from FEMA.

Oak Creek was not supposed to allow building in its designated flood zones, according to the town’s code, and the town could lose its certification for the national Flood Insurance Program if it doesn’t comply with FEMA’s flood restrictions.

The purpose of the floodplain study is to bring the neighborhood into flood-zone compliance. Trustees agreed to the study this year, despite it not being in the budget, because they understood the town would receive a reduced rate by expanding upon KenCairn’s flood plain study, which already was under way.

In other business, the Oak Creek Town Board will hear an update from Code Enforcement Officer Linda Koile regarding an ongoing abatement process for private properties that are in violation of the town’s nuisance ordinance. At the July 22 Town Board meeting, trustees authorized Koile to start gathering bids to clean up at least four properties where the owners have not responded to certified letters asking them to take care of the nuisances themselves. The property owners will be billed for the town’s work and failure to pay for the cleanup automatically will place a lien on their property taxes.

Trustees also will discuss whether to change Oak Creek’s ordinance to make it permissible to take open bottles of wine home from a restaurant. Doing so would bring the town law into line with a new state law.

The Oak Creek Town Board meets at 7 p.m. today in Oak Creek Town Hall.

–To reach Jennie Lay call 871-4210

or e-mail jlay@steamboatpilot.com


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