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Toledo, Ohio & Lake Erie

The Press Newspaper

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A hearing has been extended for a proposed ditch project in central Ottawa County to give more affected property owners time to comment.

The Ottawa County commissioners along with county engineer David Brunkhorst held a hearing regarding the Dehring/Benton-Carroll Ditch project Aug. 28 at the county courthouse.

Brunkhorst testified about the need to improve the drainage for the ditch before a handful of property owners.

At least one property owner was very vocal about the need to explore other options and to have the other property owners better informed, commissioner Steve Arndt said.

Afterward, commissioners decided to extend the hearing until last Tuesday in the commissioners chambers at the courthouse.

“At their request, we’re exploring possible diversion options for that section to deal with the (water) flow problems,” Brunkhorst said.

A supplemental report was to be presented at the hearing, he said.

The stretch of ditch under review affects about 1,000 acres and between 65 and 70 property owners, Brunkhorst said.

Based on the hearing comments, commissioners must decide if they want the engineer’s office to move forward with the project. That does not ensure it is a done deal, though, Brunkhorst said.

If approval is given to go ahead with the project, the engineer’s office will begin fine tuning surveys and gathering more information. That process includes preparing plans, project cost estimates, proposed property tax assessments as well as a construction schedule, the engineer said.

More hearings would be required afterward to allow people to comment on the plans and proposed assessments.

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