San Marcos still rebuilding one year after flood

One year after Memorial Day Flood (KXAN Photo)
One year after Memorial Day Flood (KXAN Photo)

SAN MARCOS, Texas (KXAN) – Many residents in San Marcos are still working to rebuild after a historic flood devastated much of Hays County last year. Since the flood, the city has been given the opportunity to receive $25 million in federal disaster money.

Many neighborhoods hit by the flood inside the city are still working to get back on their feet. Many homes down Conway Drive remain empty. “You feel bad, a lot of people that are in this neighborhood, they have been here a long time. They don’t want to move,” said San Marcos resident Larry Jackson. “I was told when I bought this house that water had never gotten into it.”

That was one year before the Memorial Day flood. Jackson says last year two feet of water rushed into his home and destroyed most of his belongings. After months of construction, Jackson was able to move back in, but little did he know he would once again be out and contacting a contractor after another flood hit in October.

“I saw rain coming again and of course after the first flood, I was worried,” said Jackson. This time, only a foot of water entered his home, but a large amount of damage still occurred.

The city of San Marcos will receive the $25 million from a federal program to help make the city more flood resilient. To help determine how to spend the money, they have reached out to AECOM, a consultant firm out of Louisiana for $93,360. “They have a lot of experience in both Hurricane Sandy, Bastrop fires and other natural disasters in Louisiana,” said San Marcos City Manager Jared Miller.

AECOM will help determine how to make the community safer by looking at the possibility of adding more drainage, elevating homes or even buying out entire neighborhoods.

“We’ve been very busy throughout the last year, cleaning up our community, cleaning up neighborhoods, removing debris. It certainly hasn’t been a situation where we are sitting on our hands, but there’s a lot to do,” said Miller.

Right now the money is still with the government. Miller says the city is waiting for the government to issue the federal register which could come in the next month. Once the register has been issued, the city will receive the money. Until then, Miller says the city will prepare so they can put the funds to use as quickly as possible. “Much has been done to prepare to spend it, we are moving as fast as we possibly can.”

For Jackson, he says he’ll do what’s necessary but is ready to finally see some changes. “I would like to see something done; I want to see that they are not going to let this happen again.”

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