By Seth Littrell
Register News Writer
In a Friday morning meeting called by Richmond City Manager Jimmy Howard, several city officials met with local concrete specialists to review plans that have been submitted to fix Jennifer Maupin’s flooding issues.
The plan presented would have city employees tear up the existing apron at the end of Maupin’s driveway, made of pervious concrete, and replace it with standard concrete and two large trench drains to catch any incoming water from the street.
Planning and Zoning Inspector Kevin Causey, who was present at the meeting, said Maupin was against the use of pervious concrete for the apron because she believed Lagco, the company which originally poured the apron and sidewalks as part of the Sunset Avenue Storm Water Drainage Project, used a commercial mixture rather than a residential mixture, which is ultimately why it failed to keep water out of her driveway.
However, Kentucky Ready Mix Concrete Association representative John McChord said Friday there is no such distinction between commercial and residential pervious concrete.
“In all my dealings I have never heard of any difference,” McChord said. “There’s no reason for someone to refer to it that way, because the mix would basically be the same.”
At a Wednesday morning meeting at Maupin’s residence, the homeowner said she wanted the city to not only replace her driveway, but also her portion of the sidewalk using standard concrete rather than pervious.
Causey said using pervious for the apron was not even a part of the original street plan. Originally, Maupin’s driveway was going to be made of standard concrete, like all the other driveways on the street. However, engineers noticed that she was at a low point in the street where flooding could be a potential hazard. Pervious concrete was chosen as a way to help deal with additional rain water.
“If the apron had been solid concrete, her problem would have been a lot worse,” Causey said.
According to Mayor Jim Barnes, the city also was considering raising sidewalk’s pitch to direct water away from her home, but Maupin would not allow the contractor on her property. Causey said she didn’t want the workers to cover up a stone wall on the edge of her property.
Maupin said Saturday that was incorrect, and that she told them they could work on her property as long as it was to return her driveway and sidewalk to its original state, with standard concrete that was stamped and stained. She said she was told by city representatives that replacing the stamped and stained concrete would be too expensive.
Another issue brought up by Commissioner Laura King on Wednesday morning was that Maupin’s sidewalk was too high. Maupin had said previously that when her sister, who drives a Volvo, visits she is unable to open her car door without it scraping or getting caught on the curb. King raised concerns about whether the height was compliant with the Americans with Disabilities Act.
Causey said the curb was 6 inches high, and that he had been assured by the Kentucky Transportation Cabinet that it was within regulations. He went on to say that the city could have had a barrier curb installed reaching 8 to 9 inches and still be within regulations, so the height was not an issue.
Barnes said replacing the sidewalk with standard concrete can’t be done because one of the conditions for the city receiving the grant to complete the Sunset project was that it would use pervious sidewalks on the south side of the street.
Servpro lien postponed
Howard reported Friday morning that the nearly $6,000 lien which was about to be put on Maupin’s house has been postponed until Dec. 1.
Howard said he contacted Servpro, the company that Maupin hired to clean her flooded basement and which was considering the lien because the bill had not been paid, and set up an appointment to speak face-to-face with a representative. At the end of the meeting, Servpro agreed to postpone placing a lien until the end of December.
Howard had offered to contact the company Wednesday morning after a dispute over who was responsible for paying the bill.
According to Maupin, City Safety and Risk Management Officer Phillip Williams and Planning and Zoning Chair Jason Hart told her to have the basement cleaned and send the bill to be paid by the city’s insurance.
However, Williams said Friday morning that he never said the city or its insurer would pay the bill.
“It was actually the opposite,” Williams said.
He said he spoke with the Servpro agent on the phone and told him that the city was not authorizing the work to be done and that there was no guarantee the city could pay the bill.
The insurer for the contractor that originally installed the pervious concrete also denied her claim, Maupin said.
She and city officials have scheduled another meeting Tuesday morning where the plans for Maupin’s driveway will be presented to her for approval.
Seth Littrell can be reached at email@example.com or 624-6623.