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Environment & Energy

Proposal to Address Flooding Could Go Before Voters

a photo of flooding on a highway
Heavy rain has led to flooding in communities around Summit County.

Summit County is taking a new approach to flood mitigation in the Barberton area. The county is proposing a ballot initiative this year that would ask voters to approve creating a department to oversee flooding county-wide.

Barberton Mayor William Judge said the previous idea had been to focus just on the Wolf Creek watershed, but he now believes a more regional approach would be better.

“We are looking at it as three different communities but, what Fairlawn does could affect Barberton, what Barberton does could affect Canal-Fulton and those south of us. So looking at it from a much larger regional perspective is the direction I believe we’re all going.”

Judge said Barberton is still struggling with the recent flooding. Meanwhile, he and officials from five nearby communities sent a letter to Governor Mike DeWine asking for help in being better prepared for future floods.