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THE HISTORY OF MCD
The Conservancy Act

Dayton attorney John McMahon drafted the language for the Conservancy Act legislation and lobbied for the passage of the broadly powered piece of legislation that allowed the creation of conservancy districts in the state of Ohio. Governor James Cox, owner of the Dayton Daily News, signed it into law.

In February 1914, the Ohio General Assembly passed the Conservancy Act of Ohio, which permitted the creation of regional agencies to provide flood protection for communities within the state.

Shortly after the law passed, community leaders in the Miami Valley petitioned to form the Miami Conservancy District. The Miami Conservancy District was formed in 1915, and is among the oldest conservancy districts in the state.

As political subdivisions of the state of Ohio, conservancy districts can form at the initiative of local landowners or communities to solve water management problems, usually flooding. In addition to flood protection, other approved purposes of conservancy districts include conserving and developing water supplies, treating wastewater and providing recreational opportunities. Chapter 6101 of the Ohio Revised Code authorizes the formation of Conservancy Districts.

Read about Miami Conservancy District’s Founders.

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