Flooding solution ignored in 2008
In 2008, The Lima News printed an article stating Findlay city officials were begging and pleading for someone to make a proposal to stop the problem of flooding in Hancock and Putnam counties. I attended meetings at Findlay and Ottawa and made my proposal. When finished I was treated like I could walk on water.
When leaving the Findlay Municipal Building, the city manager gave me a handful of literature on flood litigation in Hancock and Putnam counties. I read that in 1946, Bluffton, Ottawa and Findlay came to the conclusion that they all had a problem with flooding. Hancock County and Putnam County began having studies done. They hired the Army Corp of Engineers, a hydrologist and anyone else who said they knew all about water, at the taxpayers’ expense, of course.
My proposal was to go above the problem in Hancock County, purchase a large portion of land on one side of the Blanchard River or or the other, excavate a large and deep reservoir, channel or pipe water from the river during flood season into this reservoir, and have a lock to turn the water on or off. Have a pump station at the reservoir to pump water back into the Blanchard River as needed during dry seasons. This reservoir could largely be funded by the federal government. It also could serve as a recreation area, boating, fishing and camp sites.
If they would have adopted my proposal in 2008, this reservoir would be done now and the flooding problem would be history.
— James L. Matson Sr., Wapakoneta