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Nipomo residents worry debris in creek could cause flooding

Renea Sutcliffe is fed up with dealing with the debris in the creek behind her house.

“[The debris] is 40 feet across – I can walk across it – it’s forty feet across, probably 20 feet wide and about 10 feet deep,” Sutcliffe tells us.

She believes it comes from the farmers in the foothills above but she says representatives from Fish and Game have told her that’s hard to prove.

With a storm on its way, Sutcliffe is now concerned for her neighbors to the south.

“When it rains it comes down into here, it blocks [up] and then if this breaks free, it’ll go down onto Mallagh and it will flood all those homes down in there and it will damage that culvert,” Sutcliffe explains.

That’s exactly what happened to Walter Rust at his home off Mallagh last Thursday.

“I called 911 and they sent the fire department over.. the fire department took one look at the house and said we had to get out. [Then] they cut the power because the water was up to the light socket,” Rust tells us.

Now both Sutcliffe and Rust want answers.

“The county says it’s not their problem – it is their problem,” Sutcliffe says.

We reached out to the San Luis Obispo County Department of Public Works, a representative tells us home owners are responsible for obtaining permits and maintaining the creek if it runs through their property.

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