Perrysburg discusses Prospect Street erosion

PERRYSBURG – More than 90 families may be affected if erosion on Prospect Street continues. Mark Alianello, engineer with Alianello Engineering, gave an update to Perrysburg Town Board members about issues with the road at their monthly meeting.

Alianello said the Seneca Nation of Indians is “very concerned” with the erosion caused by water along the bank. Those families, which include some from the SNI, would be facing a 17-mile detour if the road were to close. If the road continues in its current condition, a lane might have to close.

“The Seneca Nation of Indians is very concerned. We’ve been out and looked at it. … There is a possibility there is money available (for repairs),” he said.

According to Alianello, the SNI has funding available through the Emergency Relief for Federally Owned Roads funding left over from the 2009 floods. Alianello said there is about $1 million available and the SNI has to ask permission from ERFO, which is administered through the Bureau of Indians, to utilize the money.

“The good thing about it is it’s 100 percent grant,” Alianello said.

If the SNI were to receive approval for the project, the funds have to be expended by the end of its fiscal year on Sept. 30.

Alianello said the project will have to be on a strict schedule, but acquiring the proper permits could take several months. There also might be funding opportunities through grants if the SNI funding were to be denied.

“The Seneca Nation of Indians has the money, they just need to get authorization to use it. Come September 30, they need to give it back,” said Alianello. “There’s a very good chance it could come through, but can’t guarantee it.”

The project will stabilize the bank and use the water’s natural flow and energy to redirect the stream away from the bank. Before the project can start, land surveys and soil samples need to be taken, and project designs will be submitted to the Department of Environmental Conservation.

According to Alianello, the SNI would like the town to pay for this preliminary work at a cost of $40,000. Members of the town board asked if the ERFO funding were to fall through, if the town would be wasting money. Supervisor Dennis Stopen said the preliminary work would have to be done either way. Alianello said even if the funding does not come through, the road has to be repaired; he does not think the road will last through the spring thaw.

“The smartest thing is to do the preliminary studies,” Stopen said.

The town board approved paying for the preliminary studies out of the highway fund. Alianello said hopefully by the end of the month there will be word if the SNI funding was approved through ERFO.

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