The questions still keep coming: what is the fargo sales tax spent on and what is the goal of the sales tax? We see it is to be used for “flood mitigation and reduction and related improvements” as the city may select: “…without limitation the providing for retention of water” and “ … engage in projects and activities as are necessary and appropriate for such purposes.” “The stated goal shall be to reduce the risk to the city to the level of a 500 year event.” It sounds all well and good, but the “…stated goal shall be to reduce the risk to the city of a 500 year level flood event” , cannot be achieved with the FM Metro plan alone as the plan does not provide that level of protection. (See the FM diversion web site.)
Did the voters know some of the sales tax money will go to a Washington Lobby firm to lobby Congress for the authorization of the project? Did the voters know a public relations firm would be hired to promote the project? Did the voters know a project manager team would be hired to run the project even before there was a project as the project has not been approved or authorized by the USACE (Corps of Engineers) or Congress?
The activities of reducing flood risk by building levees, acquiring flood prone property and other flood risk reduction activities may very well have more value than spending tax dollars on the public relations firm, the DC lobbyist and the project manager. In addition, the sales tax was implemented to provide 500 year flood level protection which the FM Metro Flood Risk Management Plan does not achieve by itself. One thing we do know throwing money at the flooding issues is not the answer.