FERNANDINA BEACH WEATHER

Nassau County’s Stormwater Engineer Provides Update on Thomas Creek

Office of the County Manager
Press Release
July 7, 2020

Nassau County, Florida, July 7, 2020 – At the Board of County Commissioner’s meeting held on Wednesday, June 17, 2020, Senior Stormwater Engineer, Katie Peay, provided an update to the Board regarding Thomas Creek.

Thomas Creek is located south of Callahan along the Nassau/Duval border. The Creek has been problematic for a number of years as it continues to get clogged with trees and other vegetation, causing flooding to the surrounding areas. Despite spending approximately $3.3 million in County and Federal funding to de-snag approximately 6 miles of the creek, property owners continue to experience flooding to their properties and homes.

Previous County efforts include the following:

During previous de-snagging projects, the Army Corps of Engineers would not allow trees along the bank to be cut down, regardless of whether they appeared to be in danger of falling, nor would they let the County do any work that would affect the bottom or sides of the bank. Because of this, the County knew that de-snagging would be a temporary solution and that they would need the Army Corp’s help in obtaining a permanent solution.

In November 2017, Commissioner Justin Taylor and members of the County Engineering staff meet with representatives of the Army Corps of Engineers, Senator Aaron Bean’s Office, and State Representative Cord Byrd to discuss other possible solutions. It was discovered at that time that there are programs available under the Army Corps of Engineers’ Continuing Authority Program (CAP). Subsequently, the Board sent a letter to the Army Corps of Engineers requesting an investigation of the problems under the authority of Section 205 of the Flood Control Act of 1948. The letter was signed at the December 11, 2017 meeting.

In April 2018, the County was notified that the project would exceed the limitations of the CAP Program and was recommended to seek a Planning Assistance to States (PAS) Study to help the County identify solutions to resolve the flooding issues. The study began in 2019 and right now, the Army Corps is currently in the data collection and model phase of the study. It is anticipated that the report will be presented to the County in the Spring of 2021. It’s important to note that the study will provide a recommendation on addressing the flooding issues, but it will not include a detailed design for work to be done.

In the meantime, Ms. Peay continues to hold bi-weekly with the Army Corps regarding their progress and Engineering staff will continue to search for funding to assist with any future projects to address flooding.

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Anyone with questions or concerns is encouraged to reach out to the Engineering Department to learn more about the County’s efforts. Their phone number is (904) 530-6225 or you can email [email protected]

You can also view Ms. Peay’s June 17th presentation to the Board by clicking the link below. The presentation began at approximately 35 minutes into the meeting.

June 17, 2020 Meeting Link: https://nassaufl.granicus.com/MediaPlayer.php?view_id=2&clip_id=972

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