Drainage

Drainage Revisited By: Mark Finamore, Township Legal Counsel

 

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Frequently Asked Questions

Question
:
Are township trustees authorized to construct township ditches?

Answer:
No. Previous ORC Sections 6139 and 6141 authorizing township trustees to construct township ditches were repealed effective April 9, 1981. The county commissioners are responsible for constructing township ditches. Townships have the authority and responsibility to construct, maintain and clean roadside ditches on township roads pursuant to their authority and responsibility to properly maintain dedicated township roads. Roadside drainage ditches are distinguished from township drainage ditches established under ORC Section 6131.

Question:
May township equipment be used to repair, clean or maintain private ditches or private water courses?

Answer:
No.

Question:
Do the township trustees have the authority to clean out and repair privately constructed underground tiled ditches?

Answer:
No.

Question:
Who has the responsibility of cleaning and repairing township ditches (those ditches established by petition under ORC Section 6131)?

Answer:
The county commissioners have the sole authority and responsibility as to both township and county ditches, except that townships are responsible for cleaning and maintaining township roadside ditches.

Question:
May the township enter upon private property and expend township funds to correct a drainage problem that is damaging a dedicated township road?

Answer:
Yes. ORC Section 5589.96 authorizes a township to enter upon private property to correct a drainage problem damaging a dedicated township road, if, after five days advance notice to a property owner, the property owner fails to correct the problem. The township is authorized to pay the expense thereof from funds collected and available in the township road fund, and then to collect by civil action
reimbursement of the funds to be returned and deposited in the township road fund.

 

 


   

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