Among the areas that experienced flash flooding this summer was a portion of South Centre Township, Columbia County, which impacted homes and several major employers. Among them, Chamber members SEKISUI SPI and J.M. Smucker were forced to shut down for days to deal with unprecedented flooding. Efforts are underway to reduce or eliminate the future risk to these businesses and residents.
Representatives from PennDOT, DEP, North Shore Railroad, the SEDA-COG Joint Rail Authority, Columbia County, and South Centre Township, as well as Chamber president Fred Gaffney, representative David Millard, and senator John Gordner recently met with the affected businesses to discuss the issues that may have contributed to the flooding. The Township has already worked with DEP to address a stream bed, which was believed to be a major contributor. Agency representatives pledged to review their areas of responsibility to ensure that drainage systems are working properly. Senator Gordner and representative Millard are working with DEP and the Township to pursue funding for a storm water management study for the area, which has not been done since the early 1970s. Such a study could identify other long-term solutions for dealing with runoff and drainage.
The businesses expressed their appreciation to the various entities helping to ensure that the hundreds of jobs and business investments will be safe from future risk of flooding.