FARGO – The Spirit Lake Nation near Devils Lake will receive $5.9 million for emergency flood protection in advance of this spring’s expected flood fight, North Dakota’s congressional delegation announced today.
The aid from the Federal Highway Administration will pay for the completion of nearly 8 miles of emergency flood control measures to defend the area from potential flood waters.
The measures are needed as a precaution, since the National Weather Service has forecast of a 50-percent chance that Devils Lake will exceed an elevation of 1455 feet this spring. Without the protection of emergency berms, that lake level would jeopardize the community of St. Michael and a number of area roads, according to the delegation.
“This is another important step in preparing for spring flooding to protect lives and infrastructure in the Devils Lake region,” Sens. Kent Conrad (D) and John Hoeven (R) and Rep. Rick Berg (R) said in a joint statement. “Fighting this spring’s flood will require a well-coordinated, concerted effort by local, state, tribal and federal officials, and that work is already underway to meet this challenge.”
Earlier today, Conrad said he was urging the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers to expedite its work in obtaining permanent flood protection solutions for the Devils Lake and Fargo-Moorhead regions.