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Property owner frustrated with flood prevention

By ANNA MEILER

WHITESTOWN, N.Y. (WKTV) --  Steve Sypek owns property on Mohawk Street, north of the train tracks in Whitestown, an area where the Sauquoit Creek has not been dredged. 

The Department of Transportation has emergency workers cleaning the creek after the severe flooding.  But, Sypek said the sediment freed from other parts of the creek is building up on his land. He's worried this may lead to future flooding in Whitestown and Whitesboro. 

"Now that they loosened all the material up creek now I'm starting to get sediment that's coming down. A piece they haven't touched to begin with. Now I'm getting more silt and it's building silt bars across the creek and eventually it's going to turn into a real problem," said Sypek. 

He also wants to build an emergency access road on his own property, from 190 Mohawk Street to the end of the Sauquoit Creek.  He said this would help the Department of Environmental Conservation more easily clear debris during future flood incidents. 

"I give them an easement to come back here because my property is the farthest point of the Sauquoit Creek. Just so they can access the property in an emergency purposes to clean out this barrier that was across there, I mean there were trees and sediment that were probably ten feet high that went across here and that started to, it basically dammed off the crick and started flooding everything like taking a plunger in a bathtub and it just fills it and that's why it just started backing up all the way into the local community," he said. 

His project was halted by a codes officer. Whitestown Supervisor Chuck Gibbs said there are restrictions from building a road in a flood plain. But, Sypek said something needs to be done for future emergency situations. 

"Granted this is a flood plain and it's meant to flood, but it's only going to flood so much and then it's going to back up into the community where residents are and I'm going to be honest with you, a lot of these residents, they're not going to be happy when they went and had all this work done and they're still getting flooded," said Sypek. 

The regional D.O.T. Spokesman said they are looking into this situation.

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