(Des Moines) -- Several state and federal agencies continue gathering data for a flood risk management plan for the entire lower Missouri River.
The Iowa DNR and partner agencies are requesting feedback from Iowa residents on information gathered from a series of public meetings held over the summer to identify areas prone to flooding along the Missouri River in Iowa. The data collected from the meetings has been organized into a single document that contains comments for locations along the Iowa side of the river. It can be found at iowadnr.gov/simra.
Tim Hall is hydrology resources coordinator with the DNR. He says any feedback received is important because they will be using the information to work with the Corps of Engineers to implement the improvements once funding is available.
“Ultimately, what we want to do is identify areas where we think there are solutions that could be implemented when funding is available to the Corps,” said Hall. “We want to make sure they go out and address the most important areas first. So, some of this is in anticipation of some infrastructure funding through Congress. When that money is freed up, we want the Corps to be able to address the areas that are most important first and that’s why they have turned to the states to try to collect that information.”
The larger, multi-state effort is in response to near-historic levels in the Missouri River in 2019. The unprecedented amount of runoff resulted in the lower Missouri River staying above flood stage at multiple locations for nearly nine months, causing billions of dollars of damage to homes, businesses, agricultural production, levees and natural resources across five states, including Iowa.
The deadline to submit feedback is September 24th and additional stakeholder meetings are scheduled near the end of the month. The DNR and other agencies will have discussions with the US Army Corps of Engineers in October.