All these homeowners want for Christmas is their drainage ditch

| 21 Feb 2012 | 10:52

    SUSSEX-For the past year, some of the residents of Lakeview Heights have been experiencing flooding in their homes and backyards due to the flattening of a drainage ditch, technically know as a swale. "This past summer, we could not mow our lawns because of a constant state of wetness,' said Ruth Mason of 9 Cedar Lane. Mason's neighbor, Jill Shrope of 15 Willow Street, had extensive water damage throughout her house after the fall hurricane. It was the first time such flooding has occurred in the eight years that the Shropes own the house. The flooding is a public issue which was addressed at Monday night's mayor and town council meeting because of a 20-foot easement on Mason's property through which the water is supposed to drain onto Willow Street. Mason claims that now there is nowhere for the water to go, since the ditch was removed more than a year ago by the developer for aesthetic purposes. The mayor and council requested title search information and a proper map to investigate the matter. Borough Attorney Megan Ward said, "I know where the property is and see where there could be a problem. We are trying to understand all of the affected areas before going forward." In the interim, the town is cooperating by having its public works manager, Jeff Card, implement a plan to add and realign pipes to improve the flow of run-off. "This is part of a storm management system that I am currently addressing in several areas throughout the borough,' said Card. Card is talking to contractors for a bid on the job and hopes to have the project completed by the end of the year. Mason said she didn't have much confidence in the proposed solution and just wants her ditch back.