Birds Point Levee
5:08 pm
Mon June 6, 2011

Nixon asks Army Corps to speed approval of temporary Birds Point levee

The construction plan for a temporary levee at Birds Point got a gubernatorial boost today.

Beginning on May 2, the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers intentionally breached the levee at Birds Point on to relieve pressure on a strained Mississippi River system. The breech covered about 130,000 acres of Missouri farmland with water.

Mo. Gov. Jay Nixon has asked the Corps to expedite the construction process of the temporary levee at Birds Point. Nixon calls the temporary levee a "vital first step for economic recovery in the region, as the levee would ensure that area farmers can proceed with planting during the current growing season.

Nixon also said that "his administration is prepared to commit the resources necessary to construct the temporary levee at Birds Point as soon as the Corps approves the plan."

A lawsuit was  filed against the federal government over the decision to breach the levee on behalf of 25 farmers whose land was swamped by the breach. Sen. Claire McCaskill then said that the lawsuit would be difficult to win.

The lawsuit claims the government violated the farmers' rights by taking their land without adequate compensation.

  • Read the letter Nixon sent to Major Gen. Michael J. Walsh, commander of the Corps’ Mississippi Valley Division.