PORT ORANGE, Fla. — A full review of how the city of Port Orange handled rising waters during recent heavy rains is underway.
Some homeowners say it’s the city’s fault it all happened and now the city is trying to find out if a closed flood gate sent water into neighborhoods.
The city spent $2 million in a key location to manage stormwater, but dozens of homes in the area still flooded.
Mayor Allen Green defended the city’s project and said it could only do so much.
“It’s not going to handle every problem,” Green told Channel 9’s Blaine Tolison. “There’s not enough money to handle every situation; it’s going to be an issue.”
One area of concern for the city is a floodgate off Spruce Creek Road.
It was closed last week when several inches of rain in a matter of hours overwhelmed retention ponds.
“You do not get that much water in that short period of time that you’re prepared for,” Green said.
City records show the gate was closed as rain flooded neighborhoods and homes in the area last week.
What they don’t show is why it was closed or if it would have made a difference if it was open.
Green admitted the retention ponds were not pumped down before the storm and believes the flood gates were not operated correctly, but said there still would have been flooding.
“Would it have made a difference? Probably, yes. Would it have resolved all the problems? The answer is absolutely not,” Green said.
The interim city manager declined our request for an interview. He is in the process of the review and plans to present it to city leaders next week.
Channel 9 asked officials with the city if the city would help pay for homes damaged in the flood if the city would help pay for homes damaged in the flood.
Officials said the flooding likely could not be solely attributed to any one error made by the city.