Fixing the city’s flooding problem comes down to one thing

Once again, both Hamtramck and the greater greater metro area suffered another episode of major flooding.
This is now the third time, within just a few weeks, that residents have had to deal with their basements being flooded. It’s become ridiculous, but weather experts are saying get used to it.
The ongoing heavy rains are being caused by climate change, they say.
The flooding has now become a political football, with some residents blaming the mayor, of all people, for this problem.
Folks, the mayor does not control the day-to-day management of the city. The position is largely ceremonial. No mayor can fix this problem.
What will solve – or at least limit – flooding, is the spending of millions and millions of dollars.
It’s been said before, and apparently it needs repeating.
The Hamtramck water and sewer system is about 100 years old, and can’t possibly handle the volume of water that drenched many of the communities in the area in a very short amount of time.
As we have also reported, numerous times, Hamtramck needs to connect to a major drainage pipe that runs under Conant. Back in the 1950s, voters were asked to approve a temporary property tax hike to make that connection.
The voters rejected that proposal, and the city has been suffering with flooded basements ever since.
It’s doubtful voters would be willing to fork over additional property tax monies today. People are on limited budgets.
It has been estimated that it would cost $40 million to connect to that Conant system. That is an amount of money the city does not have, nor could it even save up that kind of money over a few years.
Instead, it will take federal dollars to make that happen. The city has been successful in the recent past in getting federal funding to start this improvement project of replacing the sewer system.
And yes, Mayor Karen Majewski was mayor at the time that the city got that federal grant.
Getting that money did not require elected officials to do the work of finding a grant and applying for it. That was done by the city administration.
To put it simply, we are the mercy of the federal government for the funding to fully fix this problem.
Anyone saying they have a plan to fix this, which doesn’t involve getting federal funding, is either lying, or ignorant.
We are crossing our fingers in hope that President Biden will be able to get support for a massive nationwide infrastructure plan. Perhaps, then, Hamtramck can tap into that funding.
Posted July 30, 2021

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *