WAYNE - Crews have begun a major dredging project in Wayne in an effort to combat chronic flooding of the Ramapo River.

Wayne Mayor Chris Vergano is leading the charge to clear out the clogged river, which has been overflowing its banks more and more often lately. People who live along the river are applauding the dredging project. Some tell News 12 New Jersey that they wonder if their homes would have been spared from Tropical Storm Irene damage if the work had been done earlier.

The project to dredge the Ramapo River is being done in Wayne, Pompton Lakes, Pequannock, and Riverdale. The four towns are splitting a $350,000 state grant. Wayne crews began work first because they're concerned it could flood soon.