U.S. Senators Amy Klobuchar (D-MN) and John Hoeven (R-ND) today released the following statements regarding the Administration's decision to increase funding for the Fargo-Moorhead Flood Diversion Project. The project will now receive $7.4 million in Fiscal Year 2013, 60 percent more than originally allocated. Klobuchar and Hoeven spoke to President Obama last week and pushed the Administration to give the project the resources it needs.
"This year's potentially record-high flood risk highlights the need for permanent flood protection for the Fargo-Moorhead community," Klobuchar said. "I've pushed the Administration to ensure the flood diversion project has the resources it needs to move forward, and this increased funding is good news for the families and businesses in the Fargo-Moorhead area."
Senator Hoeven this week also met with Office of Management and Budget (OMB) nominee Sylvia Burwell and Army Corps of Engineers St. Paul District Commander Col. Michael Price to press for the additional funding. OMB late yesterday informed him that the Corps will make $7.4 million available for project engineering and design for the Fargo-Moorhead diversion project. Hoeven, who serves on the Senate Appropriation Committee, worked to include the funding in the Corps' Fiscal Year 2013 budget.
"With this year's flood fight in full gear and the potential for significant flooding once again, we pressed the President, the Corps and the Administration's nominee for OMB in no uncertain terms for permanent flood relief," Hoeven said. "Area residents have mounted a flood fight in four of the past five years. It should be clear to everyone that homeowners and businesses in the Fargo-Moorhead area cannot afford to delay this very important project."
Klobuchar was in Moorhead last week and met with Moorhead Mayor Mark Voxland and local officials to discuss the city's flood preparations. She has made the flood diversion project one of her top priorities in the Water Resources Development Act that the Senate is soon expected to consider, and last year joined Hoeven, former Senator Kent Conrad and U.S. Representative Rick Berg in supporting the project at a Civil Works Review Board meeting, along with state and local officials. Klobuchar also met with Major General Merdith W.B. (Bo) Temple, Acting Chief of Engineers and Acting Commanding General for the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, to stress the critical importance of permanent flood protection for the area.