Forum staff reports, Published December 18 2010
Failed bill in U.S. Senate contained flood-control funds for areaWASHINGTON – A catchall spending bill dropped Thursday in the U.S. Senate contained funding for several North Dakota projects, including almost $9.5 million for Fargo flood control.
The bill would have also given almost $80 million to other North Dakota water, military and flood protection projects, according to a statement from Sen. Kent Conrad, D-N.D.
Senate Democrats abandoned the bill after failing to garner Republican support.
“What people need to understand is that eliminating earmarks won’t save the nation one dime,” Conrad said in a statement. “But now it will be Obama administration officials rather than North Dakotans deciding how the money is spent.”
According to Conrad’s office, the bill contained funding requests – aka earmarks – for many North Dakota water projects, including the $9.5 million for Fargo.
Other water projects around the state were as follows:
- $3 million – Grafton flood control.
- $2 million – Northwest Area Water Supply.
- $7 million – South Central Regional Water District.
- $7 million – Southwest Pipeline.
- $3.1 million – Standing Rock Sioux Tribe Irrigation Project.
- $1.6 million – Mandan Raw Water Intake.
- $1.7 million – Grafton Water Treatment Plant Improvements.
- $1.4 million – North Prairie Rural Water District.
- $1.6 million – Park River Water Distribution System Improvements.
- $1.5 million – Grand Forks Water Treatment Plant.
- $1.8 million – McKenzie County Regional Water Service.
- $1.5 million – Greater Ramsey Water District expansion.
The bill also included military projects affecting the state’s facilities, such as $18.8 million for the Control Tower at Minot Air Force Base, $16.5 million for the Central Deployment Facility at Grand Forks Air Force Base and $11.2 million for the Readiness Center at Camp Grafton.
“These are critical projects for economic development in North Dakota and for enhancing our national security,” Conrad said. “They should not be sacrificed in the effort to eliminate wasteful projects in other parts of the country.”