County: Masonicus Brook De-Snag 'Should Help Alleviate Flooding' In Mahwah
County Mosquito Control says it will start project in a few weeks
Mahwah should get “some help with flooding” thanks to a county de-snagging project, Tim Kelly, the Heavy Equipment Supervisor of the Bergen County Mosquito Control, said. Mosquito Control crews should be in Mahwah within the next few weeks to begin cleaning out Masonicus Brook in an effort to alleviate flooding.
“Unfortunately, it’s Mother Nature, and there really is no cost effective way to prevent these hundred-year, severe storms we’ve been getting,” Kelly said. “But, the de-snagging should help with average storms.”
The process of “de-snagging” involves removing trees, branches, debris, blockades, sandbars and scholls from the brook to improve the water flow down the brook. “There is a tremendous area – a section of Route 17, Island Road and Franklin Turnpike – that all drains into that brook,” Kelly said. “There’s lots of surface area there, so the more smoothly the water can flow down the brook, the better.”
According to Kelly, the Mosquito Control is currently coordinating its efforts with the township engineer and Department of Public Works, and expects to begin the job “as soon as possible.”
According to Bergen County Freeholder and Mahwah resident Rob Hermansen, the township should be “extremely happy” that the Mosquito Control crews are coming to do this job. “They do such great work and have such a great reputation,” he said. “The Mosquito Control is in really high demand, and it has a long list of projects it needs to get done. The timing on this worked out perfectly.”
According to an announcement Mahwah Mayor Bill Laforet made at a flood conference in Mahwah last month, the township has a permit for the de-snagging as part of the dredging of Winter’s Pond project that finished last year. The permit runs out this September, Laforet said.
Mahwah Councilman John Roth, who said he called Hermansen regularly for the past year to push for the project, said it will not cost the township anything. “The service is provided for free; all it costs us is reallocating some DPW hours,” he said.
The project, he said, “is not an end all. But, it is a small step in the right direction to get this situation mitigated and help the flow of water.”
Once Mosquito Control crews, and what Hermansen called their “very large” equipment arrive in Mahwah, the project should take a few weeks to complete.