Levee Planning Effort Gets More Time
While work continued on the Glasgow Milk River and Cherry Creek System Wide Infrastructure Framework (SWIF) Plan, revisions from the Army Corps of Engineers were returned to the Levee safety committee. The good news that came with it was an extension on the SWIF plan for an additional year to fix the revisions and work on budgeting and funding for repairs and upgrades.
At the most recent Glasgow City Council meeting, Mayor Becky Erickson said that they are working on research for possible grant funds to help with the multimillion dollar project. The one year extension will give the city until July 16, 2015, to finalize plans for improvement. Erickson said that they would be budgeting around $75,000 annually to get the Levee up to compliance.
Mike Kaiser, who sits on the committee, will be surveying the land and working with landowners on property lines, while work on vegetation removal will continue. The local National Guard said they could help shoulder some of the work, with the exception of burning.
Director of Public Works Robert “Bob” Kompel explained that some of the conditions that were originally placed were taken out, but maintenance would have to continue to upkeep some of the problem areas. He also explained that they are working on estimated costs and budgets for the SWIF to get a more finalized picture of what all the work will add up to.
It was reiterated at the meeting that the majority of town would be affected if they didn't meet the deadline, or meet compliance on the Levee, as most of the south side of town lies in the flood plain. Erickson said that it would take $300,000 to get up to compliance and the city was looking into the cost of flood insurance. Several sites online list flood insurance from $1,000 for $100,00 of coverage to $5,000 for $250,000 of coverage. But rates would vary depending on location, risk and property.
While revisions are being completed and further research into costs and budgeting are being looked at, it could be a while before the finalized SWIF plan is ready to present. Kompel said that they were also looking at a Levee maintenance district to help with the costs of upkeep and maintenance in the future.