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Hillsboro residents purchased flooded homes without knowing it

Posted at 7:19 AM, Apr 12, 2024

HILLSBORO, Texas — “The houses looked like they were rising from the water," said Megan Henderson, the City Manager for Hillsboro.

"It was coming through the baseboards of my grandson's closet and it was also in the living area," resident Kywona Roquemore said.

First-time homeowner Kamilah Davis, purchased her home with the hopes of creating memories of a lifetime but a big problem was around the corner.

She remembers the day like it was yesterday.

“We ran through the house trying to figure out where the water was coming from. It just kinda kept rising and rising," Davis said.

But that wasn’t her only flood.

“It wasn’t until this flood happened and it flooded again this year. I went into the bathroom and I noticed feces all over the floor and in the toilet," Davis said.

And her other neighbor had the same experience.

“I spent around $18,000 to move into the house. Any time it rains, the ditches fill, I have sewage coming back up into the bathtub into my house," first-time homeowner Zacarah Kelly said.

The flooding took place on the east side of Hillsboro, first in March 2023 and then again earlier this year. Davis said she called everyone she could for help. The city told me they tried to build a temporary solution.

“We moved immediately with city power and equipment to create a dirt ditch," Henderson said.

"The city is liable, the seller is liable and the builder is liable. They knew that there was a water issue and still proceeded to build these houses and not even build them to ensure that I don’t have any flooding," Davis said.

“We looked into it and discovered that the houses had not been built according to the drainage plan. The city determined that the only way to protect property and peace of mind for our citizens would be to construct a drainage improvement," Henderson said.

Henderson told me their fix is only temporary and isn’t reliable. She said a dirt berm can erode and get muddy.

I spent all day in Hillsboro to get to the root of the problem.

The issue now is headed to the city council for a solution. Council members are bidding out the project to the tune of $359,000.

From there – engineers will survey to determine the size and grade of the ditch. Then, construction begins.

Henderson hopes it’s all approved next week – to start on the long-term fix.