Wood County Commission approves extending Happy Valley flood mitigation

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PARKERSBURG, W.Va.-(WTAP) 13 years after two major floods in five months, Wood County continues to offer money to Happy Valley residents to vacate their homes.

The county commission Monday approved the latest offer of flood mitigation.

With the help of federal money, the remaining dozen homes in that area could be vacated and eventually demolished.

Supporters argue that saves money in the long run, since those structures-if left standing-would be eligible for federal flood insurance.

"I know when we started out, there were a small number of properties being acquired," said Fred Rader of the Mid-Ohio Valley Regional Council. "Neighbors were interested in keeping up the few vacant properties. But as more people have been bought out, there's less and less of that."

There was discussion about future uses for the vacated area.

That includes growing apple and Christmas trees.

West Virginia University at Parkersburg proposed using it for agriculture a few years ago, but that never really materialized.