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Peru Residents Disagree With DNR Over Dam Maintenance

Dams in the Hidden Hills subdivision in Peru are falling apart, and residents disagree with the Department of Natural Resources over who should maintain them.

Hidden Hills Dam

Photo: Bill Shaw

A dam in Hidden Hills is one of six that need major structural repairs.

Residents of Hidden Hills subdivision in Peru are trying to avoid paying thousands of dollars to repair and maintain six dams in their neighborhood.

The Department of Natural Resources told residents in September last year the dams fall under state regulations.

But Miami County Commissioner and resident of Hidden Hills Larry West says Hidden Hills residents have now formed a steering committee and are investigating a number of factors that affect classification, ownership and maintenance of the dams.

“We are looking at employing an attorney to help us challenge the DNR on some of these issues,” West said.

Kenneth Smith, Assistant Director of the Division of Water for the DNR, says the dams are structurally unsound and need immediate attention.

“The issue is the dams are falling apart,” Smith said. ” As they are right now, they are not safe.  They need to be taken care of.”

West says the steering committee is waiting to get an estimate of maintenance and repair costs while they clarify factors of ownership and regulation.

 

 

Taylor Killough

Taylor Killough is a graduate of the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign and has studied anthropology and digital journalism. She has professional experience in education and communications and is excited to be a part of the award-winning team at WFIU/WTIU.

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