Residents blame landslide problem on Benton Co.

CORVALLIS, Ore. - Heavy rains left several homes north of Corvallis severely damaged in January.

At a Friday night meeting, residents argued that Benton County is responsible for a series of landslides in the Rosewood neighborhood.

Gayena Flake lost her home when a landslide left it in a toppled mess in January.

Flake said water from culverts near the road contributed to the flooding.

"The county is taking no responsibility for destroying our house?" asked Gayena Flake. "This is county property, county ditches, and county roads. I think it 's your responsibility."

However, county officials said it's not county property.

"The road was not built by the county, it was built by a private developer," said Roger Irvin, Director of Public Works for Benton County.

Resident Walter Payne also blames the flooding on the drainage near the road.

"Those little culverts are a joke if you look at them," Payne said.

The county said the culverts do not belong to them, either.

"From what I have investigated, drainage patterns were there already," Irvin said.

Benton County is currently seeking funding for a hazard mitigation plan. A comprehensive study on the drainage in the area north of Corvallis could take a year to complete.

Meanwhile, the Benton County is asking residents to temporarily fix the problem with pipes or plastic.

Residents said they don't even know where to begin with the supplies.

"We don't know where to put the plastic, how do we even know where to send the water?" said Judy Lovre, a resident of the Rosewood neighborhood.

For now, all the Rosewood neighborhood can do is hope something gets done before the high water returns.

During the flood, Governor John Kitzhaber declared Benton County to be in a state of emergency.

Benton County is still waiting to hear if it will get special clean-up funds. Right now the county will send out an inspector to your home to assess the damage.