After classrooms flooded, Planada school may take legal action

PLANADA, Calif. (KFSN) -- The Planada School District could take legal action against Merced County and the Merced Irrigation District (MID) after several of their classrooms were flooded out during a March storm.

Four classrooms and the library were damaged after a storm on March 22nd caused a nearby creek to flood.

Superintendent Jose Gonzalez estimates the damage to be around $500,000.

The district belongs to the Central Valley Regional Insurance Group, which Gonzalez said does not provide flood insurance.

Gonzalez said they're now depending on the county's recent disaster proclamation to help with emergency dollars.

If that doesn't come through, he said their last resort is making a claim against the county and MID for the breach

"It was natural flow that came from the foothills. However, our stakeholders are asking why that creek wasn't up kept, or why wasn't there safeguards in place to keep it from occurring," Gonzalez said.

Merced County officials said representatives have accompanied both Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) and CAL OES officials during damage assessment visits to Planada and will continue to help where possible.

A spokesperson for the irrigation district said the Planada flooding was an unfortunate event that resulted on stream outside of the jurisdiction of the company, and that "MID cannot discuss or provide any further comment on a potential claim filing,".

The school has received about $1,500 in donations, and thousands of new books since the flooding.

The classrooms impacted are expected to reopen in June. The library will hopefully reopen in September or October.
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