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West Pittston Flood Mitigation Project Gets Needed Approval

September 7, 2018

A proposed flood mitigation project that calls for elevating up to 13 homes in a flood-prone area of West Pittston gained a needed approval this week.

The Luzerne County Flood Protection Authority Mitigation Advisory Board approved the project on Thursday, according to authority Executive Director Christopher Belleman.

The advisory board includes representatives of Columbia, Luzerne, Montour, Northumberland and Snyder counties.

The Luzerne County Flood Protection Authority, which consists of five appointed Luzerne County residents, approved the project earlier this month.

Plans call for the homes to be raised above “base flood elevation level,” with basements filled in and utility lines re-routed, according to Belleman.

The project, in the early planning stages, is estimated to cost about $2.5 million.

The authority will pursue hazard mitigation grants through the Federal Emergency Management Agency, as well as Luzerne County Office of Community Development grants and other funding sources, Belleman said.

The owners of the impacted homes will likely be required to contribute 5 percent to 10 percent of the cost, according to Belleman. The project will be voluntary, giving property owners the option not to participate, he said.

The Pennsylvania Emergency Management Agency designated the 13 homes as “repetitive loss properties” or “severe repetitive loss properties” following the major flood of September 2011, when some West Pittston residents had to evacuate by boat.

Contact the writer:

emark@citizensvoice.com

570-821-2117

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