Water Protection Rule Puts Ohio Cities, Homeowners at Odds

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A battle over strips of land designed to protect drinking water in reservoirs around Ohio has landed in court.

Five Ohio cities are challenging a new state law that would allow property owners to remove trees or cut paths through the buffer strips.

A judge has put a temporary hold on the law and some state lawmakers are pushing to do away with it.

Cities say the shrubs, wild grass and trees in those buffers are there to filter out pollutants and stop them from producing the kind of algae that can contaminate drinking water supplies.

But homeowners around two reservoirs near Columbus are upset because they say the buffers are filled with weeds and hurt property values.