Some motorists simply turned around in order to avoid driving through high water in the 500 block of East Vienna Street in Anna at around midday on Wednesday, Sept. 19. The location frequently floods when heavy rain falls. At the time the picture was taken, Union County was under an urban and small stream flood advisory which had been issued by the National Weather Service office in Paducah.

Anna city officials frustrated by street issues

Anna city officials again have voiced their frustration about a lack of progress on several street projects in the Union County community.

The concerns were voiced at a regular meeting of the Anna City Council which was held Tuesday evening, Sept. 18. The meeting was at Anna City Hall.

One of the concerns about streets which was discussed at the meeting focused on flooding which occurs in the 500 block of East Vienna Street. The location frequently floods when heavy rains fall on the Union County area.

Flooding at the location occurred less than 24 hours after the city council’s Sept. 18 meeting.

Heavy rain fell on the Union County area at around midday on Wednesday, Sept. 19.

At around noon on Sept. 19, the Union County area was under an urban and small stream flood advisory which had been issued by the National Weather Service office in Paducah.

The weather service reported at 11:56 a.m. that heavy rain was expected to cause urban and small stream flooding in the advisory area.

At the time, the weather service reported that 1.5 inches of rain had fallen quickly in the Union County area. Another inch of rain was possible.

Flooding at the East Vienna Street location has been a concern for city officials for a number of years.

City officials said they have met with State Rep. Terri Bryant, R-Murphysboro, to voice their concerns about the situation.

The city also voiced its appreciation to Bryant for the work she has done related to the street issues.

The crux of the matter appears to have the city in the middle of a situation which involves a state-maintained highway and private property. East Vienna Street is part of Illinois Route 146.

Basically, city officials said at last week’s council meeting, there is no answer to solving the flooding problem.

City attorney John Foley said that resolving the flooding situation should not be Anna’s responsibility.

“It shouldn’t be the city’s duty to fight that fight,” Foley said. “If it’s a state highway, it’s their jurisdiction.”

Discussion at last week’s meeting hinted that the situation could end up in litigation.

Frustration also was voiced about plans for improvements along South Main Street, from the four-way stop in downtown Anna, to the City of Jonesboro.

Major work was done  by the state during the summer at the four-way stop. 

The city thought it had entered into an agreement last fall with the state for the improvement work. Discussion at last week’s council meeting suggested that city officials learned that money for the improvements had been allocated to another project elsewhere in Illinois. The city has been told that bids could be accepted next spring for the Anna project.

“I guess signing an agreement with the state means nothing,” a frustrated Anna Mayor Steve Hartline said. “I’m just disappointed in our government.”

Other Business

In other business at last week’s meeting:

The city council approved a resolution in support of Hadley’s Haven, which is an all-inclusive playground project. The project is planned at the Anna City Park.

City administrator Steve Guined reported that work continues on the final steps in the closing of the city’s municipal landfill.

The landfill was closed in the mid-1990s. The landfill site is located along Kaolin Road, north of Anna.

The city is hoping to obtain final closure status from the Illinois Environmental Protection Agency, IEPA, by the end of 2018.

The city also is working with IEPA on a five-year permit reapplication for its municipal wastewater treatment plant.

Motor fuel tax funded street maintenance work tentatively is planned during the second or third week in October. The city has allocated $154,000 for the work.

Halloween trick-or-treat hours were set for 6 p.m. to 8 p.m. on Oct. 31.

The Gazette-Democrat

112 Lafayette St.
Anna, Illinois 62906
Office Number: (618) 833-2158
Email: news@annanews.com

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