The Mayors Council Rahway River Watershed Flood Control will head to Washington DC February 15 to urge the Congress to appropriate in President Trump’s first budget funds to begin the engineering and pre-construction work on the Rahway River Flood Mitigation plan.
Bolstered by the federal US Army Corps of Engineers draft environmental impact statement that said there are no impacts that can’t be mitigated with reasonable actions, the Mayors will be asking that the Chief Engineers final report be completed and that plans for construction begin. The Mayors expect to meet with Congressman Leonard Lance; Congressman Donald Payne; Senator Corey Booker; Senator Robert Menendez and senior staff of the US Army Corps of Engineers.
Cranford Mayor Tom Hannen said "Over $100 million of damages were faced by residents along the Rahway River during Irene. The Mayors have kept their eye on the ball to ensure progress and we appreciate our federal and state representatives who have been behind us all the way.”
Alternative 4a includes modification to the Orange Reservoir, adding two 36 inch outfall pipes permitting the reservoir to be drained two days before a major storm to reduce significantly the water elevation downstream during the major storm event. There will be downstream channel improvements through Cranford with one and one-half mile of channel deepening with most of the channel work done in the river not on land. Also there is expected to be lifting or acquisition of numerous properties in the City of Rahway. The plan had the strongest benefit cost ratio as part of the federal process meaning the project benefits (less flood damages) exceeded project costs.
The Mayors Council includes 2017 Mayors of the affected communities: Cranford Mayor Thomas Hannen; Union Mayor Suzette Cavadas; Rahway Mayor Sam Steinman; Kenilworth Mayor Anthony Deluca; Springfield Mayor Diane Stampoulos; Millburn Mayor Cheryl Burstein; Maplewood Mayor Victor DeLuca.