10 Oct Update: Storm Water Task Force
Following up on the public meeting where residents were invited to see an overview of the storm water challenges in 800 acres that lie in the 100 year flood zone, also known and Royal Oaks and Mossy Oaks, a task force of professionals and residents was appointed to a Multi-Jurisdictional Task Force whose purpose will be to drive, with citizen input, a plan to address very serious shortcomings in the area’s drainage system. The initial meeting will be organizational in nature. Future substantive meetings will engage the public.
As I said the night we announced the Task Force is the first time to my knowledge that the City, Town of Port Royal, Beaufort County, the SC Department of Transportation, Beaufort Jasper Water and Sewer Authority and the Beaufort County School District will sit around a table with an agreement to work together until we have solutions.
Please join me in thanking Rep Shannon Erickson, County Council Member Alice Howard along with County Council Paul Sommerville and Beaufort and Port Royal Councils for getting the team to the table.
I do not want to promise instant answers. Nor do I want anyone to believe we need to wait for a final “plan” before work we all know needs to begin can start. In fact, I saw SCDOT equipment in the neighborhood last week.
As a post script I received and email from a citizen wholes down town suggesting that downtown drainage is not recognized by the city. If you go to the public works department you will likely see a map of all reported problems and a check list of “to dos” . Given Royal Oaks and Mossy Oaks house nearly half of the residents of our city, and their systems have needed attention for a number of years and that people lost their houses during the past two storms, the neighborhood is higher on the list.
Maintaining storm water systems is an every day activity. The sizes of the challenges vary from very well to very complicated. The City’s five person storm ware team can only do so much given constants of time and money. It is my hope that the multi-jurisdictional approach will carry into meeting other needs throughout the city.