McNally deflects blame for Newport Lake fish kill

YOUNGSTOWN, Ohio (WKBN) – Youngstown Mayor John McNally said there is probably not much that can be done to prevent sewage and other runoff from making its way into the lakes of Mill Creek MetroParks.

Last week, park officials confirmed that thousands of fish were killed in Lake Newport. Experts are blaming recent heavy rains with causing sewage and storm water to flow into the lakes, depleting oxygen for the fish.

Dead fish have since made their way into other bodies of water at Mill Creek, creating a massive stench.

McNally said part of the problem is the city’s aging water and sewer lines, many of which are tied together underground. He said some lines are 100 years old.

But he thinks there may be more to it.

“This system, when it was first created, this was a design feature of it. Probably not the best design feature in this day and age. But I don’t think it is the sole cause of issues. I mean, we have runoff all the time that streams into all of our lakes,” McNally said.

He said plans are in place to improve sanitary sewer lines, including those running through the park, at a cost of $146 million. But the work is not slated to start until 2020 and be completed in 2033.

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