Hoening News Update

DEFIANCE – The three-member board of directors for the Maumee Watershed Conservancy District, Defiance, voted unanimously today to pursue construction of a flood-water basin in Hancock County’s Eagle Township.
The vote was taken at today’s regular meeting of the conservancy district board.
The board’s decision will allow for preliminary engineering of the basin to move forward in order to gather information needed to present to the conservancy district court at its annual meeting in May. It will then be up to the court to decide whether the basin should be included in the conservancy district’s work plans.
Steve Wilson, project manager, said Stantec engineering has identified 16 possible configurations for the flood-water basin, ranging in price from $71 million to $402 million. Officials say the goal is to seek state grant money to pay for construction. The project has already received a $15 million state grant, which is being used to pay initial costs.
The basin, which is expected to range in size from 600 to 800 acres, will be dry most of the time. However, during a flood, the basin could hold enough storm water to drop flood water 1.5 feet on Main Street, Findlay, during a 100-year storm.
Wilson said the basin “dramatically reduces” the flood basin along Eagle Creek as it heads towards Findlay.
The court, which meets once a year, includes common pleas court judges from all 15 counties served by the conservancy district. It must approve any new projects within the conservancy district before work can proceed.
The conservancy district serves Allen, Auglaize, Defiance, Fulton, Hancock, Hardin, Henry, Lucas, Mercer, Paulding, Putnam, Shelby, Van Wert, Williams and Wood counties.
Courier reporter Denise Grant is developing this story.