The Enid News and Eagle, Enid, OK

Opinion

October 18, 2013

Enid has made significant progress on flood protection

ENID, Okla. — Floods are a part of Enid’s history.

We’ve seen them before, and we surely will suffer from them again.

We can’t stop nature, but we can do things to influence how bad the flooding is and how much damage is caused.

Since the deadly flood of October 1973, Enid has done much to lessen possible damage from another flood of that magnitude.

The question is how much has been done and is it enough?

Developer Bob Berry doesn’t think so and filed suit against the city, claiming not enough has been done to protect neighborhoods along Boggy Creek. He also says the city has used stormwater development fees for other uses.

City officials say stormwater funds have been spent in accordance with law. They also point to the five detention facilities under construction.

Berry himself also has commended city staff for work on building new stormwater detention ponds and clearing brush and silt from Boggy Creek.

Significant progress has been made, and we commend the city for that work. As City Manager Eric Benson pointed out, in the past four years, city workers have done 30 miles of channel maintenance.

We also have seen tremendous improvement in emergency preparedness and response.

The Enid and Garfield County Emergency Management Office, headed by Mike Honigsberg, didn’t exist 40 years ago.

We have more people trained to deal with a flood emergency, including swift water rescue teams that weren’t around years ago.

Flood protection is a work in progress, and always will be.

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