Hoeven Celebrates Flood Protection Groundbreaking for the Minot Region

Senator Advancing Fourth Phase of Project, Will Tie Together First Three Phases & Provide 60 Percent of Residents with Flood Protection

MINOT, N.D. – Senator John Hoeven today joined the Minot community in celebrating the groundbreaking for the first three phases of the region’s flood protection project. Hoeven is working as a member of the Senate Energy and Water Appropriations Committee to advance the fourth phase of the project, 65 percent of which will be funded by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers. This will tie the earlier phases of the project together and deliver flood protection for 60 percent of residents in the Souris River Valley. To this end, Hoeven secured strong support in the Fiscal Year (FY) 2018 funding legislation for the Corps’ flood study in the Minot region, a key step that must be completed prior to the construction of phase four.

“This flood protection is vital to the well-being of families and businesses in the Minot region,” Hoeven said. “It takes tremendous dedication to move large infrastructure projects like this forward. We deeply appreciate everyone who has helped achieve this milestone. When the Corps completes the fourth phase, all of this infrastructure will be tied together, providing flood protection for the majority of residents in the region. We continue working to ensure you have the support, funding and tools needed to construct comprehensive flood protection for the entire Souris River Valley.”

The project was able to advance to today’s milestone due to Hoeven’s efforts to secure the required regulatory approvals, including a Section 408 review completed by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers in December. The review had faced significant delays, which prevented the Souris River Joint Board from awarding contracts for constructing flood control infrastructure. Hoeven worked with the Corps since last July to resolve the delay, and as a result, the board was able to award the contracts prior to the project bids’ expiration on January 15. This will also streamline the approval of the project’s future phases.

In addition to his efforts with the Army Corps, Hoeven is working with the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) to support flood protection in the Minot region and across the state. Most recently, FEMA held a workshop in Minot to find creative funding solutions that will help advance comprehensive flood protection for the Souris River Valley. The event was the result of a request Hoeven made during his roundtable with FEMA Administrator Brock Long in Minot last year. 

During that same roundtable, the senator also urged Administrator Long to ensure FEMA’s flood maps and the resulting flood insurance rates are accurate in the Souris River Basin. This includes making sure FEMA reevaluates discrepancies in its preliminary flood maps, provides an extended timetable for public comment on the maps and updates the maps as permanent flood protection is built.