U.S. Army Corps of Engineers
Attn: CECW-P (IP)
7701 Telegraph Road
Alexandria, VA 22315-3860
RE: Supplemental Draft Environmental Impact Statement, Fargo-Moorhead Metropolitan Area Flood Risk Management.
To: US Army Corps of Engineers
I am writing in opposition to the April 2011 Locally Preferred Plan (North Dakota Diversion with storage and staging) for flood control in the Red River Valley. I understand that Fargo needs help in protecting its city, but to the extent that the U.S Army Corps of Engineers and its sponsoring commissions are asking other towns and its people to take on Fargo’s water problem is beyond comprehension.
The staging area is stated to be 33,390 acres, and the Corp acknowledges that there will be impacts outside of this area. If the Corp has not determined this cost or possible impacts how can you proceed with a project not knowing the possible outcomes and still say this is the best plan when not all is know. I also have a problem with this many acres being affected since my job is directly tied to agriculture and these acres since I work at the local elevator in Kindred. Will I have a job if the elevator doesn’t have any grain to handle due to persistent flooding of these acres? How do you account for and pay for this?
Is this project more about flood protection for Fargo or for expansion of the city? Dr. Mahoney talks about how Fargo has given up 400 or so houses that were built by the river at 36 or 37 feet. How high is the level around Davies high school? They are still issuing building permits at these same levels banking on the diversion aren’t they?
What about the rural water systems? Have the systems been accounted for as to how to protect them and account for the cost?
Fargo is a vital part of North Dakota’s economy but that does not give it the right to destroy other communities and school districts just to promote its own new school (Davies) and expansions areas. Kindred and Richland should not have to lose out, and its remaining citizens should not have to pay the higher taxes it will require to maintain itself without due compensation. In my mind that does not mean that just because a tax statement says a piece of property is worth $200,000 that is all a person should get. Where can you replace your home and friendships for the same money that has been established based on what a tax statement says? It can’t be done!!
I ask that the Corp take a step back and look for other alternatives to Fargo’s water problems. We all know there are other things that can be done to minimize the problems. Everyone outside of Fargo should not have bear all the problems associated with Fargo’s water issues. Please listen to others and well.
Thanks for your time,
Hickson, ND 58047