Tracker Pixel for Entry

Letter to the editor from Trana Rogne on the Diversion

| Letters to the Editor | January 24th, 2016

To the editor:

The Saint Paul District U.S. Army Corps of Engineers has recently released a document touting the value of the Alternative Delivery plan, called the P3, for funding the FM Diversion.

The P3 funding is a private public partnership to fund projects that were not funded in the Water Resource Reform and Development Act of 2014.

Among the reasons stated in this document for using the P3 funding method are the following:

“It will save the federal government $400 million.”

This is because Diversion Channel Non-Federal Sponsor (the Northern Reach) of the project is a local project. It is clear the federal government is not going to fund the Northern Diversion Channel. The only ones who can make up that lost federal share of $400 million are the taxpayers in North Dakota.

The state of North Dakota will only put in so many dollars. Fargo/West Fargo will be paying the extra federal share. Of course Moorhead will not be paying for Fargo's growth.

“The P3 relocates the federal risk.”

A private contractor who is to build the project is to take the risk. What is the risk that the Corp (federal government) does not want to take? Is it a financial risk? If that risk is too big for the federal government, who is this private contractor or group of contractors who is big enough to take that risk? If it is a risk of failure of the high-hazard dam or any of the miles of levees, it is a condemnation of the whole project.

The Diversion Channel Non Federal Sponsor (Northern Reach) is to be built by a P3 contractor and the Southern Embankment (Southern Reach) is to be built by the Corps, as they, the Corps, are more qualified to do it. Which one, the Diversion Channel or the Southern Embankment (which is just a long high-hazard dam), has more financial risk or a higher risk of failure? If the project is sound, there should be no shuffling of risk to others. The private contractor when faced with a failure of finances or project failure can file bankruptcy leaving North Dakota holding the bag.

“The P3 will reduce exposure and future cost to FEMA.”

This may very well be true, without flood insurance FEMA will not pay flood loss claims.

“The project is shovel ready.”

It is not shovel ready; all design work is not completed and contracts are not ready to be signed.

“Local funding is secured.”

The voters and West Fargo rejected the assessment district as a backup to the funding means chosen by the Diversion Authority. Also the assessment district is still in court. With talk of a new sales tax it is presumptuous to state that local funding is secured.

The Buffalo Red River Water Resource District has refused to approve the FM Diversion budget for 2015 and has not approved the 2016 budget.

The Minnesota contribution to the project is in grave doubt so that $100 million will be made up by Fargo taxpayers, as North Dakota will not be paying Minnesota's share of the project. Minnesota has already spent millions on flood protection for Moorhead.

If the P3 funding is authorized, Keith Berndt, Cass County administrator and a member of many committees of the Diversion Authority, is right -- Fargo taxpayers will pay for this project.

Trana Rogne

Kindred ND 58051

Recently in:

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Policy, not law, has torn more than 2,300 children from their parents along the U.S.-Mexico border. Although immigration reform has been a heated topic for decades, the policy of zero tolerance began with a…

Culture

​Dream factory

by HPR Contributor

By Oscar de Leonoscarldeleonjr@gmail.comTucked away near the rolling hills of West Hollywood, Chris Haskell, a former student at MSUM, makes his usual trek into his office where he edits footage to craft trailers to some of the…

Monday, June 25, 7 p.m.Sanctuary Events Center, 670 4th Ave N, Fargo It’s no surprise that Q magazine dubbed The Flaming Lips one of the "50 Bands to See Before You Die," with their elaborate stage shows and multi-layered…

Just last week Raul and I were driving a rental car on the backroads of Mallorca, a small Mediterranean Island off the coast of Spain. Not gonna lie, my nose may or may not have been pressed hard against the window admiring the…

Ireland Has Sent Pope Francis and The Vatican A Dear John Letter: “It’s Over!”The Irish people and the Vatican have been developing a huge cultural grand canyon for decades over the issues of gender identities,…

FARGO - A collection of memories from High Plains Reader's annual Cocktail Showdown. Participants were judged on creativity, flavor, and presentation; and this year we added a new category. Like years before, each establishment was…

Every year the Fargo Moorhead area celebrates its love of food with Restaurant week. Each restaurant involved prepares a special menu to showcase the best of what they have to offer. This year there are seventeen restaurants…

Front Street Taproom has struck up a relation with local record shop, Vinyl Giant. There are two events where turntables are set up and people can play their records. Every Wednesday they host Vinyl Night from 7:00 to 11:00 p.m.…

Scaring up early buzz as a premiere in the Midnight section of the 2018 Sundance Film Festival, Ari Aster’s “Hereditary” is the horror film of the year. Anchored by the vital performance of Toni Collette as grieving,…

By Tayler Klimektklimek@cord.eduCome one, come all to the 59th anniversary of the Midwestern Invitational Art Exhibition! This tradition celebrates each year with a preview and awards selection the first night of its showing, with…

Projects have a tendency to take on a life of their own once they’ve reached a certain point. When the Fargo-Moorhead Community Theatre was established in 1946 to offer other local opportunities for artistic expression outside…

Fargo has its share of people who are passionate about stand-up comedy, even if the success of clubs devoted to it has been mixed. Despite the fact we have seen places like Courtney’s Comedy Club and Level 2 Comedy Club close…

By Ben Myhrebenmyhre35@gmail.comHow lucky we are in the FM area that we have so many craft breweries, but did you know that we also have two cider houses? Cottonwood Cider House is one of those cider houses and is just a short…

Best Local CelebrityCarson WentzBest Stylist / BarberJed Felix, Everett’s BarbershopBest Salon / Barber ShopEverett’s BarbershopBest Tattoo Parlor46 & 2 TattooBest Tattoo ArtistMeg Felix, No Coast TattooBest Gift ShopZandbroz…

By Melissa Martinmelissamartincounselor@live.comThink back to one of your worst small decisions. Then answer the following questions:How did you make the decision?What happened after the decision?When did you know it was the worst…

Last Word

​Keeping FM C.L.E.A.N

by HPR Contributor

By Paul JensenFargo, as the most populous city in the state with 120,000 inhabitants, added nearly 6,000 20-to-34-year-olds in 2015, just over five percent of the total population. Fargo is attracting well-educated young…