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Sevier Co. neighborhood battles high water, again

8:11 PM, Jan 15, 2013   |    comments
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With a river in her front yard, there's nothing for Erika Bennefild to do but go with the flow.

"We just wait and see what happens, that's all we've been doing," says Bennefield.

She rents a home in the Kings Hills subdivision in Pigeon Forge. She says in the year and a half since she's moved in, the drainage ditch in her front yard has overflowed up to her front porch twice.

According to Pigeon Forge Mayor David Wear, the neighborhood was built before the property was annexed into the city.
The subdivision does not meet Pigeon Forge flood codes.
Now some property owners want out.

David Taylor, the Community Development Director for the City of Pigeon Forge, says seven homeowners have applied for a FEMA buyout. So far, he says one has made the initial cut.
The wet weather caused headaches all over Sevier County Tuesday.

Officials closed several local roads, and both Pigeon Forge and Sevierville Schools.

They report only slight property damage and no injuries due to the rising waters.

But it's not over yet.

"I figure it will come up one or two more times in the next couple of days," says Bennefield in light of more rain in the forecast. "We deal with it, because we have to."

Taylor says the city is continuing talks with FEMA about buyouts in the Kings Hills neighborhood.

He expects to discuss the issue with city board members next week.

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