Blanchard River cleaning project in the works - Toledo News Now, Breaking News, Weather, Sports, Toledo

Blanchard River cleaning project in the works

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The Blanchard River in Findlay. The Blanchard River in Findlay.
HANCOCK COUNTY, OH (Toledo News Now) -

While residents living along the Blanchard River are waiting for the Army Corps of Engineers to finish their study on flooding, they may have to pay a tax to clean the river, as well.

Officials from counties in the Blanchard River watershed met Thursday morning to begin finalizing a plan to clean the river. The six counties worked together in the ‘90s to clean the river of soot and debris, and the time has come for another extensive cleaning.

"The river is in need of some additional cleaning, some more aggressive cleaning than what we have done on maintenance," said Phillip Riegle, a Hancock County commissioner.

The coalition voted to allow the local soil and water groups to bid out the cleanup work to contractors. Depending on the price tag and the number of grants the project receives, one option for funding would be to institute a one-time assessment for property owners living within the watershed.

"Potentially a small assessment," Riegle said. "We're talking maybe less than $10. But that would be the whole watershed, if we do go ahead and do that."

Though it won't prevent flooding, officials say while they wait for the Army Corps to finalize their flood mitigation study, this is something they can do that will still benefit the area.

"Come next spring, we'll see benefits already," Riegle said. "At least some benefits in drainage in some areas, and also with flow."

Bids for the project are expected back in the next two months.

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