Conrad, Hoeven Back F-M Flood Protection Plan

Senators Speak Out on Behalf of Locally Preferred Plan at Key Corps Meeting

Washington –  In a key meeting with senior leaders from the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, Senators  Kent Conrad and John Hoeven today endorsed a proposal for permanent flood protection for the Fargo-Moorhead region. 

"Although the Fargo - Moorhead region has suffered some of its worst flooding in recent years, experts warn that it is only a matter of time until the area is hit with even more catastrophic flooding," the Senators told the Corps leaders.  "This flood protection project is vital to the Fargo-Moorhead community. We hope we can count on your full support for this project."  

In the presentation to the Army Corps of Engineers Civil Works Review Board (CWRB), the Senators backed the locally preferred plan developed by Fargo and Cass County leaders. 

Colonel Michael Price, Commander of the St. Paul District of the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers presented the final results and recommendations of the feasibility study for the Fargo- Moorhead Metro Flood Control Project to the CWRB.  

North Dakota Governor Jack Dalrymple was joined by Fargo Mayor Dennis Walaker, Moorhead Mayor Voxland and Cass County Chair Darrell Vanyo in speaking on behalf of the state and local governments in support of the comprehensive, permanent flood protection project. 

If the Fargo-Moorhead region were to lose a fight against a 100-year flood, damages would be nearly $6 billion.  A 500-year flood would inundate nearly all of Fargo and a large portion of Moorhead, causing more than $10 billion in damages.  A catastrophic breach in temporary protection under these circumstances would likely result in hundreds of fatalities and would devastate the area economically.  

"The best project to get the job done is a diversion.  It provides the highest level of protection, far higher than can be achieved with levees alone.   And the right diversion project is the locally preferred plan, the North Dakota diversion," the North Dakota Senators said. 

The CWRB is comprised of five to six members of the Corps' Senior Management, including the  Deputy Commanding General and Deputy Commanding General for Civil &Emergency Operations.  Presentations to the Board are required for civil works projects that need new or additional congressional authorization.  

Earlier this week, Senators Conrad and Hoeven sent a letter to President Obama urging him to support the flood protection project and include $30 million  in his budget for the next fiscal year to advance the plan.