Commission formed to investigate Maumee sewage issue
MAUMEE, Ohio (WTVG) - An independent committee is looking into how and why large amounts of sewage from the City of Maumee were discharged into the Maumee River over the course of decades.
However, the city’s mayor said the real investigating should be done by groups that have the actual power to do something about it.
The commission, complied by the Lucas County Commissioners, started work on Thursday. They’ll be asking some of the same questions Mayor Richard Carr said he still has as well.
What is known, for several years the City of Maumee was dumping untreated sanitary sewage into the Maumee River, dating back possibly as far as 1985.
The city self-reported the issue last year, but the exact why and how much has yet to be determined. The new Maumee River Discharge Commission will do some of that work.
“I hope we can provide some information and answers for the people of Maumee, who feel as equally angry as I do,” commission member and Maumee resident Susie Heywood said.
Carr said the State of Ohio and federal EPA are both investigating. He’d prefer to leave the work to the professionals.
“I think the process needs to take place with people who have the authority to investigate us, and this board does not,” Carr said.
There are no Maumee city officials on this new commission, and that’s not by accident.
“Since the investigation, at least in its primary function, will be to determine what happened in the City of Maumee and therefore Maumee officials will be at the center of the investigation, the sense was they’d be more sources of information rather than active commissioners,” committee chairman Fritz Byers said.
Carr said he’s already made plans with the EPA to correct the problems. He said the city has been working with the EPA since the issues were first discovered last year.
“It just seems to be (the commission is) more interested in trying to get Maumee than they are to try and get at the problem,” Carr said. “Believe me, I’d love to know why this wasn’t reported for all the years and we’re trying to figure that out for ourselves.”
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