Drainage issue flows to meeting

CAROGA – Some town residents said they are concerned about drainage problems in their neighborhoods.

At the Town?Board meeting Wednesday, the residents – many from the area around Broadway?Street and Second Avenue – asked for help.

The residents said rain repeatedly floods their yards, damaging their driveways and homes, due to a lack of significant drainage.

Bill Klock, who lives in Little Falls and Caroga, said the problem has been going on for several years.

“I just put $800 in my driveway, and it is being washed out,” he said.

Klock asked who would be responsible for the damage to their homes and property.

Klock said Steven Putman, the town’s highway superintendent, told him it was the homeowner’s responsibility to maintain the culvert.

“My culvert is exposed. There is nothing I can do about it. I am not paying any more money to have it unplugged,” Klock said.

Putman did not address Klock’s comments at the meeting.

Bud Lawlor, of 109 Broadway St., said work was started to put a larger culvert into his neighborhood, but it was never finished.

“Now, when kids are in my backyard, they are looking at a 3-foot-high culvert that has never been finished,” Lawlor said.

Lawlor said there are roughly 15 properties for sale in his neighborhood because people come and see all the mud in their backyard.

“The water comes down so high it shoots at the bottom of the road four feet high,” Lawlor said. “And it crosses the road and fills up my property every time.”

Addressing Lawlor, Putman said they had discussed putting a right-of-way back at the end of the road with piping, but Lawlor had “lawyered up.”

Putman also said they discussed the culvert, which was placed there with Lawlor’s consent, but said Lawlor called his lawyers again.

Lawlor tried to talk with Putman about his statement, but was not allowed to speak during the superintendent’s report.

Pam Levanites, of Second Avenue, said the answer was to divert the water and put piping in to drain the water.

“Something has to be done about the water, because, again, its not going to be covered on my homeowners [insurance],” Levanites said.

Denise Dent, of Second Avenue, said she reset her foundation?- costing her $2,500 – and water still comes in.

“Something has to be done about this,” Dent said.

Councilman Robert Sullivan, who lives on Southshore Road, said that water has hit his property as well, running down the hill.

“You walk across your lawn and sink,” Sullivan said.

Putman said he hopes to put larger piping around Broadway Street. He said the piping in the area is too small, which causes problems.

He noted location also can be a factor.

“If you live at the bottom of [a] hill, you are going to get water,” Putman said.

Arthur Cleveland can be reached at acleveland@gmail.com