Before hysteria sets in over perfunctory statements made by proponents of the Fargo Moorhead Dam and FM Diversion, the nod to proceed is a routine step in the mechanical machine utilized by the USACE.
The tragically amusing portion in all this is every headline created by the PR machine supporting the Fargo Moorhead Dam and FM Diversion implies that these edicts have the entire support of Washington. When in reality, the project has major hurdles to overcome…, and in the off chance the project is approved – it will be tied up in court for years as the project continues to escalate in cost like Boston’s “Big Dig“.
Local politicians will undoubtedly glad hand anyone in an election year that will offer up a vote in the pursuit of getting elected to office.
However, the more inept politician will pander towards the easy targeted voting populace of Fargo, without realizing they are rolling loaded dice on a bad bet.
There is considerable division over the diversion in Fargo and any politician that pursues the easy vote may alienate the oppositions vote in Fargo, while simultaneously losing the support of the remaining 400,000+ residents in North Dakota and 5+ million residents in Minnesota.
In true fashion, the Fargo Forum fell all over themselves grabbing their pom poms to cheer-lead for the project.
Here is the article, excerpts and commentary.
by author: Kristen M. Daum
WASHINGTON – U.S. Sen. Kent Conrad says the Obama Administration has given its approval for the Red River diversion to move forward, a pivotal procedural step for the $1.8 billion Fargo-Moorhead project.
The White House’s backing was needed before the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers’ top officials could sign off on a Record of Decision, a document which officially sends the project to Congress.
“This is another critical step to advance the project before Congress can authorize it and then provide the funding,” Conrad said in a statement.
COMMENTARY: The Obama Administration has not approved the Fargo Moorhead Dam and FM Diversion, it’s not within their power. They’ve simply allowed the project to move to the next procedural step. The only pivotal step in the process is whether or not congress can fund the $2.04+ billion project, at a taxpayer cost of over $40,998 per structure in the metro area.
The North Dakota Democrat said this afternoon that the White House’s Office of Management and Budget told him they completed their review of the metro flood control project and determined that it is consistent with the policies and programs of the president.
COMMENTARY: No real surprise from Kent Conrad. Business as usual for the politician using whatever influence available to support the project. -NOTE- Kent Conrad did not allow any opposing voice to provide economic testimony or contrary evidence at the Senate Budget Committee held in Fargo, ND on August 10, 2011.
The administration’s approval allows the Record of Decision to be signed, which Fargo-Moorhead officials expected the corps to hand down in early April.
Once that happens, the project’s opponents will also have the chance to file lawsuits protesting the current plans.
COMMENTARY: Once again, the Obama Administration has not “approved” the Fargo Moorhead Dam and FM Diversion. They’ve simply given the green light for the next procedural step to be taken in the projects journey to congress for consideration.
Several communities south of Fargo-Moorhead have expressed concern over the project’s plan to temporarily store water upstream of the diversion, which could displace at least a few hundred homes and residents.
COMMENTARY: Aside from the patronizing arrogance of casting aside the rights of property owners having their land and lively-hoods stolen from them, this is about Fargo developing a natural flood plain at the expense those they’ve written off as expendable.
Every politician vying for office has to ask themselves one fundamental question. How would I like to lose my equity as a result of irresponsible development of a flood plain?
How will history record their actions?
Defenders of property rights or sell-outs to greed?