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Peru hoping to change floodway to floodplain

Posted by wlpo on December 2, 2014

The next historic flood of the Illinois River could put Peru’s east wastewater treatment plant underwater. The sewage plant had to be surrounded with sandbags during the record high flood in April 2013. City officials want to have a flood wall built but first they need a permit from the Illinois Department of Natural Resources.

City Engineer Eric Carls say flood walls or even an outbuilding require a building permit from IDNR because the property is in a floodway. He thinks a flood way study could remove the sewage plant and seven neighboring companies from the floodway.

The study isn’t cheap. The city council Monday approved paying Chamlin and Associates $50,000 for the study. The cost also includes $10,000 to pay IDNR to review it. Carls estimates the permit to build the flood wall would cost the city $29,000.

If they could get the area changed to a floodplain instead, businesses like ADM or Quality Liquid Feed wouldn’t need to ask IDNR for an expensive permit, they would ask the city instead. He’s hoping the businesses would help pay for the study.

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