Legislators Get Flood Project Update - KXNet.com - Bismarck/Minot/Williston/Dickinson-KXNEWS,ND

Legislators Get Flood Project Update

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The city of Minot can't afford the proposed Mouse River flood protection plan without more help from the state.

That's what Minot Public Works Director Dan Jonasson told members of the legislature's Water Topics Overview Committee today.

The group held a hearing in Minot and asked for information about flood control and water supply issues in the region.

Jonasson said the current split for paying for flood projects where the state pays 60% and the local agency pays 40% will not work considering the estimate of over a half-billion dollars for the Minot portion of the project alone.

(Dan Jonasson, Minot Public Works Director) "Realistically if we have to go with a 60/40 split and keep this as a state and local project, we can't afford to build it. We would like to see something closer to a 75/25 split, we think we could possibly come up with a local match for something like that."

Minot will be putting an estimated seven million dollars per year into a fund to pay the local share of the flood control project through a half-cent sales tax.

Jonasson said the city is also pushing to get the federal government to pay a portion of the cost, but that process is stalled right now.

Meanwhile, he told the legislators the city will be interviewing engineering firms next week, with plans to hire one to work out details of the first three portions of the flood control project.

The areas to have flood projects built first are near downtown on 4th Avenue Northeast, the NAPA Valley area near the water plant, and Forest Road - also near the water plant.

Jonasson said the water treatment plant must be protected first.

(Dan Jonasson, Minot Public Works Director) "It's a very important project. It protects I'd say the most vital piece of infrastructure that we have in Minot - our water treatment facility."

Jonasson told legislators the city is facing more than 300 million dollars in infrastructure projects in the next four years to deal with growth in Minot.

The legislative committee took no action today, but will use the information if bills are developed to be considered in next year's legislative session.

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