Congressman Lee Terry (R-NE) released the following statement on today's House Subcommittee on Water Resources and Environment hearing - examining the management of the summer 2011 Missouri River Valley flooding. At the hearing, the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers' dam operating procedures were evaluated, and whether the Corps' water release decisions triggered and/or intensified the flooding was investigated. In August, at Terry's invite, House Transportation & Infrastructure Committee Chairman John Mica (R-FL) came to Omaha to tour several flooded areas.
"The river's flooding resulted in damaged infrastructure, flooded farmland, and substantial disruptions in commerce, for Omaha, as well as most of the Missouri River Valley.
"As anyone who lives near a major body of water knows, flooding is a reality that must be expected and planned for. Considering the effort and money that have been spent over the last half century to implement a sophisticated, nationwide flood management system, the recent flooding begs the question of whether the system is properly managed, and if not, we must determine what needs to be done to better handle future events.
"It is critical that we investigate the flood control activities of the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, to ensure that the Corps' decisions worked towards preventing this avoidable catastrophe," Terry said.