Engineer on weed watch to keep ditches clear

Auglaize County Engineer Doug Reinhart shows Auglaize County Commissioners the work being done on local ditches.
Chelsea Luebrecht
Staff Writer

Wind has made the annual ditch spraying program difficult, Auglaize County Engineer Doug Reinhart said.

“So many days we got winded out,” he said. “But the guys are doing a good job.”

The program is to protect drainage ditches against weed growth and clogging.

Drainage laws go all the way back to the 1850s with records of some ditches being worked on every 25 years.

“The people who lived near the ditches would make their petition and the ditch would be cleared,” he said. “But in the interim the maintenance would revert back to the residents. Some would keep up and some wouldn't.”

The Ohio General Assembly in 1957 decided that if the engineers would do the spraying every year then they would mandate maintenance for those ditches by the residents.

“Between tile ditches, open ditches and the two rivers, we're at about 380 miles,” he said. “We have 18 of us licensed for the herbicide application.”

Every three years, engineers have to...

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