Monday, August 12th, 2013 was one of those un-seemingly dull summer days with brief evening interlude of watching a parade of nonsensical musings coming from Fargo Diversion Authority Chairman Darrel Vanyo and his sidekick Keith Berndt. Question after question was evaded, denied or the resulting summation of circular reasoning on the part of Keith Berndt or Darrel Vanyo.
The lengthy and outright cowardly protests preceding Darrel Vanyo’s and others attendance underscores many of the interminable issues at hand. Part of the reason that the Diversion Authority members dislike meetings where the public challenges their actions is because they know deep down that what they are doing is wrong. It’s just easier to hold a small meeting with a few representatives…, as opposed to seeing the faces of those being demoralized by the amoral actions of the Diversion Authority caught up in the immorality of their own constructs.
You can tell a lot about an elected officials morality by their actions. Do they defend things that benefit themselves or do they defend those that have no representation?
It’s not rocket science…, it doesn’t take “the best scientific minds” to come up with reality of what is transpiring via the Diversion Authority at the behest of Fargo. It is simply a development plan built upon the best bull-manure that money can buy.
You really have two choices in life…, you either decide what you believe and let your beliefs guide your behavior or let your behavior justify your beliefs. The latter becomes the eventual loss of your moral compass and you believe you have become a law unto yourself. That arrogance is painfully apparent in Cass county and Fargo commissions behavior and why many North Dakotan’s regard them as Imperial Fargo Imperial Cass.
Therein, lays the rub. The Diversion Authority, Cass County…et al, professes that it reaches out and listens, yet totally misrepresents the will of the constituents affected by the project. More specifically, the outright manipulation of the Bakke, Hickson, Oxbow ring-dike vote, wherein Bakke and Hickson residents were denied a legitimate vote in addition to the previous surveys and one on one meetings which paints a contrary picture to the rose colored glasses that Keith Berndt and Darrel Vanyo are gazing through.
The bald faced ignorance of suggesting that non-incorporated entities don’t get a say is rather convenient from the bully pulpit. Ironic how Cass county commissioners enjoy cashing those commission paychecks for NOT fairly representing those constituents.
“For example, interstates, railroads, anything that’s built, if you take only the negatively impacted people… What are you going to have as far as anything being built?” – Darrell Vanyo
Really..!? That’s the best argument that Darrel Vanyo and his ilk can muster for brutalizing landowners upstream and downstream for over 4 years.
I would personally like to know what is so darn special that needs to built in a natural flood plain south of Fargo that couldn’t be built and more easily protected on land in Minnesota or West Fargo.
Excerpt Page 5 – USACE Appendix P 1.3 Floodplain and Flood Risk Characteristics:
“As stated earlier, the topography of Moorhead, while relatively flat, does provide greater elevation relative to the Red River than does Fargo. For this reason, a much larger percentage of Moorhead than Fargo is located above the 500-year flood.”
If Cass County were TRULY reaching out, then the utter nonsense suggested by Darrel Vanyo would be nothing more than an unspoken thought.
Something that would seem even more like a genuine attempt of reaching out would be for District 5 commissioner Mary Scherling, who was seen skulking around the back of the Christine community center, to have had the decency of introducing and availing herself to affected property owners… Oh…, that’s right…, she was conspicuously absent during her campaign and even more indifferent since she was elected with the help of several thousand dollars of Realty PAC money well spent to continue protecting Fargo real estate interests. I guess it would be hard to look the people you’ve failed.., in the eye!
It will be interesting to see if Mary Scherling receives another buyout and how fairly her property values against others in the area…, or whether her Cass county commission seat will be surrendered if she relocates out of District 5.
Perhaps the most obtuse fabrications that Keith Berndt and others on the Diversion Authority are clinging to is fallacy that 2009 was only a 50 year flood event. Completely and utterly false. No matter how many “parrots” the USACE or Diversion Authority line up.., the story falls apart very quickly when the 2009 flood was openly regarded as a 100 plus year flood preceding, during and after the event…, only to be downgraded when the USACE rolled out the hypothesis of a 42.4′ flood being a 100 year flood event to distract people from the water displacement as a result of development since 1997 in the natural flood plain and the future development plans Fargo has for the remaining natural flood plain south of Fargo.
There is little need for self aggrandizing cheerleaders for Fargo’s development plan to hide behind the “hired guns” of the Fargo-Moorhead Metro Expert Opinion Elicitation Report. The whole report is nonsense and the credibility of the selected “experts” is definitely a point of contention.
Forgive me for not trusting the butcher with his thumb on the scale, but the numbers were cooked and presented in such a way to appeal to fear…not fact minded individuals. Page 26 of the MN DNR EAW document spells it out very clearly. FEMA 100 year flood levels are 39.3′ feet and the USACE 100 year (Period of Record) flood level matches the 2009 elevation of 40.8′ feet.
The mere fact that Keith Berndt was grasping at straws to justify a ring-dike of the size and magnitude proposed – based on a flimsy “hysteria-induced” request for temporary flood protection in 2009…, displays how little confidence the Diversion Authority has in any of the far-fetched schemes they come up with.
Even more unseemly is the Diversion Authority using “carrots” like “curb and gutter” to entice property owners to sway their opinion…, which will only result in more empty promises and further financial burdens to those already shouldering the burdens created by Fargo and the Diversion Authority.
Fargo taxpayers had better take heed. Darrel Vanyo and the Diversion Authority are spending like identity thieves. Stating that “curb and gutter” would be paid by the Diversion Authority…, should also include the costly maintenance of paved streets as opposed to perfectly functional gravel roads?
I wonder how Fargo residents will feel about hitting those costly Fargo pot-holes when a completely unnecessary ring-dike and “curb and gutter” is being laid at their expense?
Are these enticing offers the amoral actions of a Diversion Authority acting morally or immorally…?