Flooding mitigation effort needed now

I am writing to express my concerns over flooding issues for the K-Beach area. As you are well aware, last fall there was considerable flooding in our area. It was declared a borough, state, and federal disaster. We are still dealing with the paperwork and process of obtaining any of the funds to repair from last year. We are still trying to fix our home, farming business, and property from the damages caused by last year’s flooding. My septic system was flooded and sank into the ground. My house and barns had their foundations compromised, and my crawl space filled with water to within inches of my flooring. This led to our home and outbuildings being heaved unevenly out of the ground during freeze-up. My doors barely operated, and double-paned windows lost their seals when it froze this winter. We sat all winter with feet of ice in the crawl space and covering my entire property. I will have to raise my entire house and all my outbuildings to re-do the foundations, and weather-proof again. During the floods, we had to sell off half of our breeding stock animals, as there were very few areas that were high and dry. Most of my land was under a foot of water or more. We have been slowly repairing these damages as we can afford to. We still use water very sparingly in our household as our septic system is barely working.

My neighbors are all dealing with similar issues and problems, and we all have been since last September. I say all of this to let you know the seriousness of our situation. We appreciate all of the work that the borough did in putting in culverts and creating “Lake Karluk” as a holding area for the water drained, sending people to look at the damage and speak with us during the flood. We also appreciate the time spent in meetings and in studying this flooding problem with experts. We are glad that the borough has been very methodical and thoughtful in trying to determine a solution to our areas drainage problem. We have waited patiently and worked with the borough throughout all of the flooding and up until now. We have waited for a plan to deal with these high water issues, for some kind of borough solution to our lack of drainage. I have heard of no plan and see no solutions being implemented. It is July. The time to deal with these problems is now. We can’t wait until August or September when the rains start. We will be flooded out and unable to create the infrastructure needed to effectively drain our neighborhood. Already, this summer, after a few days of rain, people are pumping their crawl spaces, surface water sits in puddles for days after, and leach fields slow to inoperable rates. The ditches and culverts that were put in last year fill with water and remain filled for days after a rain. We just want the borough to appreciate that the time for action is now. We sit with properties and homes still damaged from last year and watch the clear signs that we will have another disaster in just a short time. We need a solution, a plan implemented, so our neighborhood doesn’t go under again this fall. Thank you.

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