Watershed group seeks city's help to stabilize stream bank

By Thomas Wilson

   The City of Elizabethton is being asked by the Boone Watershed Partnership to share in the $15,000 cost of stabilizing a stream bank along Buffalo Creek near the National Little League Park.
   Elizabethton City Council is scheduled to consider a resolution for joining the Boone Watershed Partnership to stabilize the stream bank at Lions Little League field. According to the Partnership's request, the stream bank has eroded to the extent of affecting the roadway adjacent to Buffalo Creek identified as Little League Field Road.
   The project is estimated to cost $15,000 by the partnership. The Partnership has committed to $8,500 with the city being asked to contribute $6,500 to fund the stabilization project. The project is one of several water quality improvements planned for the Lower Watauga River and its tributaries.
   In a diagram submitted to the Natural Resources Conservation Service, the project would armor the right bank of Buffalo Creek while three J-Hook stream bars and a V-Weir would divert the flow of the creek slightly way from the Little League Field.
   The resolution also requests the city apply for an Aquatic Resource Alteration permit from the state Department of Environment and Conservation and a Section 26a permit from the Tennessee Valley Authority. The permits are required when construction and/or alteration activities are proposed along the Tennessee River or its tributaries.
   The Carter County Soil Conservation District is expected to provide some project management, according to the resolution.
   The Boone Watershed below South Holston and Watuaga Dams is about 670 square miles. The local watershed (below South Holston and Watuaga Dams, excluding the Doe) lies in two states and four counties, and it includes the cities of Bristol Tenn. and Va., Blountville, Bluff City, Johnson City, and Elizabethton.
   In other business, the council will select a new appointee to serve on the Elizabethton/Carter County Economic Development Board and the Library Board. The appointments will be made to replace late Councilwoman Diane Morris who died last month.
   City Council is scheduled to meet at 7 p.m. Thursday night.