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Rep. John Wall, Wahpeton, N.D., Published March 11 2013

Letter: Amendments sensible options

I am surprised at the reaction of some in the Fargo community toward the amendments proposed for the F-M diversion project.

First, the Legislature is committed to Fargo, period. The House of Representatives voted to provide $100 million specifically for Fargo’s plan; a plan that will allow the city to be protected up to 42.5 feet.

The introduction of the amendments was neither hastily considered nor approved. City leaders were very aware of the coming changes and the rationale as to why they were considered. By no means are steps being taken to block, stop or impede the flood protection efforts for Fargo.

Second, Fargo’s voice is not the only voice to be heard. While the city is of great concern, so too are the surrounding communities and landowners. We have a need to protect the minority voice. Residents both north and south of Fargo have as much say and need as those within Fargo city limits.

The new amendments, which were approved with only four “no” votes, will allow us to protect the city while being cautious for the future. If federal money is not provided, the citizens up and down the valley will be saddled with a very large debt that I am not confident we can easily or quickly pay.

Please be assured that the amendments in question are not a power play or a vindictive move. It is a calculated measure that will allow for the ultimate protection while assuring that the project is not ahead of itself or the funding.

Rep. Wall, R-Wahpeton, represents District 25 in the North Dakota House.