Council, mayor, homeowners all at odds over water plant expansio - Toledo News Now, Breaking News, Weather, Sports, Toledo

Council, mayor, homeowners all at odds over water plant expansion

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TOLEDO, OH (Toledo News Now) -

Toledo City Council and the mayor's office remain at odds over money for property acquisition related to the expansion of the Collins Park Water Treatment Plant, and while some property owners have already sold to the city, other home owners on Collins Park Avenue say they have no intentions of selling.

"Always with anything with the city, they always need or want more than they need," said Phil Perry, a homeowner who says he doesn't want to sell his home.  

Right now, it is up to the homeowners to decide if they want to sell their property, but residents say they are not being offered a fair amount.

"I have no other income, just Social Security," said Mary Ann Acevedo. "What, are you going to put me in an old folk's home where I'm going to sit there and rot because I can't afford another house?"

Toledo Public Utilities Director Dave Welch says the city needs more land to carry out its expansion plan, and already has deals with three property owners and three other deals pending.

"We're going to have to build a new flocculation basin, we need room for a new pole barn, we have to relocate the chlorination facility. There's a lot going on in five years and we're trying to get things done as quickly as possible," Welch said.

But residents say the Public Utilities Department has not unveiled their exact plans.

"If there's 20 houses and you need 10, tell us what 10 you need," Acevedo said. "Don't come knock on my door one day and say, 'Well, can you move out? Because we need this house.'"

The mayor vetoed a measure approved by council last week to withhold any uncommitted money for property acquisition for the project, and Councilman Shaun Enright says he wants to open up the lines of communication between the city and concerned neighbors.

"As of now, nobody knows the plan," Enright said. "So neighbors don't know if they're getting a parking lot built next to their house, or a sludge pond, or even if anything is going to go there."

Council now must decide whether to uphold the mayor's veto, or overturn it.

The city is planning more than $300 million of improvements at the water plant to address EPA concerns.        

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