A Rahway River Watershed Regional Conference will take place Friday night at Union County College in Cranford to discuss the impact of Hurricane Irene and possible solutions to flooding from a regional perspective.
The conference, which will begin at 7 p.m. in the Roy Smith Theater, is open to the public and will include a panel discussion with local officials including Cranford Mayor Daniel Aschenbach. The mayors of Springfield and Millburn are also scheduled to be part of the discussion along with engineers from the Army Corps of Engineers.
According to Aschenbach, the ultimate objective of the meeting will be to "form a Flood Control Authority and to indentify storage and other solutions that could protect homeowners and businesses."
The conference is expected to include comments from members of the Rahway River Association as well as engineering consultants from Hatch Mott McDonald, who will explain exactly what happened when the storm hit, and why the damage was so severe.
The conference will begin with an overview by Aschenbach, who will explain what engineers and officials have learned about the recent flooding by touring the Rahway River Watershed following Hurricane Irene. Officials will also discuss the creation of the Mayor's Council on Rahway River Watershed Flood Control and dates for future meetings to decide on regional projects to control flooding.
Following the presentations, Aschenbach said there will be a roundtable discussion involving himself, Mayor Joseph Florio of Union, Mayor Hugh Keffer of Springfield, Mayor David Wright of Winfield and Deputy Mayor Robert Tillotson of Millburn.
Residents will also have an opportunity to give their input on the flooding situation toward the end of the summit.