Hailey Considers A Wide Range Of Flood Control Options After Wet Idaho Spring

Sep 8, 2017

A flooded Big Wood River caused a million dollars-worth of damage to infrastructure in Hailey earlier this year and left dozens of homes in need of repairs.
Credit Idaho Fish and Game

After neighborhoods in Hailey flooded earlier this year, leaders in the community are now looking at mitigation measures to prevent the water from rising too high in the future.

Safeguarding the Della View neighborhood from another big flood is a top priority. Some of the proposals up for discussion include raising or lowering certain parts of city streets, elevating homes in flood-prone areas, improving storm drain infrastructure and building berms along the Big Wood River channel.

The city’s mayor, Fritz Haemmerle, says each of the options requires considerations ranging from cost to impact on homeowners. The Idaho Mountain Express reports dozens of homes in the Wood River Valley community were damaged. and losses and repairs for infrastructure totals around a million dollars. City officials are set to meet with a team from FEMA next week to talk about how much of the damage will be covered by the federal government.

Blaine County, along with four other counties in the state, were deemed eligible for federal disaster assistance. It's unclear just how much funding they'll receive. The designation means FEMA would cover 75 percent of repair costs; the state of Idaho would pick up 15 percent of the price tag, and local governments would only be responsible for the remaining 10 percent of recovery costs.

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