The Ottumwa Courier

September 24, 2013

Council discussing Jefferson Park drainage ditch

By JOSH VARDAMAN Courier staff writer
Ottumwa Courier

---- — OTTUMWA — The Jefferson Park drainage ditch has been filling in with sediments and other objects since it was constructed in the early 1980s. Although it can handle large amounts of rain in its present state, the ball has begun rolling to try and get the proper plans in place to improve it.

At a special meeting Monday afternoon in council chambers, Ottumwa City Council members heard a presentation by Larry Seals, director of Public Works, regarding this ditch.

According to Seals, public works officials have been keeping a keen on eye certain spots of the drainage ditch for the past six years or so, and it was surveyed four years ago to try to get an idea of its state.

The problems that the ditch could potentially cause are on the mind of public works and City Council, but in order to get the funding to start repairs to it, funds would have to be reallocated from other projects currently going on. Several things that public works are currently working on have timelines that need to be met, and, according to Seals, they will not deprioritize other projects as long as the drainage ditch does it job.

Council members and Seals are beginning to shed some light on the topic, but starting the project needs to be discussed further by the council and more information needs to be gathered before funding for the project will be discussed.

— To see reporter Josh Vardaman’s Twitter feed, go to @CourierJosh