Parisi announces $900K for Pheasant Branch repairs

(NBC15)
Published: Oct. 18, 2019 at 1:19 PM CDT
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Dane County Executive Joe Parisi announced Friday that $900,000 in county funds will be used to repair Middleton's Pheasant Branch Conservancy after the historic flooding of 2018.

Parisi joined Middleton Mayor Gurdip Brar and Friends of Pheasant Branch Conservancy representatives to make the announcement.

Parisi said Dane County will award $500,000 from the 2019 Park and Trail Flood Repair Grant program. These funds are in addition to the $400,000 Parisi is including in his 2020 budget. The funds will be used to expedite the cleanup and flood repair of the outdoor recreation destination.

"Pheasant Branch Conservancy is one of our region's most valued recreational resources, but it is still reeling from last summer's record flooding," Parisi said. "We owe it to our communities to show our resiliency, and these dollars will help ensure the outdoor recreation destinations that Dane County residents love to visit can be restored from continued safety and enjoyment."

The $1 million Park and Trail Flood Repair Grant program was included in the 2019 County Budget to aid communities in recouping flood damage costs due to the 2018 flooding. Pheasant Branch Conservancy's proposed grant award is one of six being recommended for action by the Dane County Board.

"The city is pleased an excited to be working with Dane County in fixing the flood damage from 2018 to our Pheasant Branch Conservancy Creek Corridor," Brar said. "Pheasant Branch Conservancy is a wonderful paradise for the whole region to enjoy in peace and tranquility."

The city's director of public lands, recreation and forestry, Matt Amundson, said this year they partnered with Friends of Pheasant Branch Conservancy to commission a master plan study to make improvements to the entire creek corridor.

"We feel one of the first things to be done would be the stream banks stabilization process. With the amount of equipment and construction activities, the last thing that would likely happen is the trail and bridge being completed," he said.

He said there is not currently a timeline on any projects, and the city plans to finalize the study by the end of the year.

In addition to Friday's announcement, Dane County Emergency Management Director Charles Tubbs was on hand to present a check from the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) to the City of Middleton for expenses related to the flooding of 2018. Tubbs presented Mayor Brar with a check for $328,985.44.

A resolution awarding the 2019 Park and Trail Flood Repair Grant awards was introduced at Thursday's County Board meeting. It is expected the $1 million total for all the projects will pass the County Board by the end of November.

Also on Thursday,

to conservancy repairs. The grant money will be used to restore newly purchased parcel of the Pheasant Branch Conservancy. That conservancy is expected to provide added runoff control for Lake Mendota.