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Minot and Souris River Joint Board hoping to speed up the timeline on flood control construction

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Representatives of the city of Minot and the Souris River Joint Board are again asking North Dakota Legislators to look at a proposal to speed up the timeline for the flood control project.

Right now, the project is projected to be completed by the year 2045. Minot Mayor Tom Ross and Souris River Joint Board chairman David Ashley had proposed two options for the Legislature’s interim Water Topics Overview Committee, to speed up the timeline by 10 years, to finish the project in the 2035 time frame.

"That would reduce the amount pledged by the state during the last session, in terms of the Legislative intent in HB 1020, by $143.5 million," Ashley told the Committee. "How is this done? Simply by the influx of federal money we were able to secure, and shortening the implementation time for the schedule of work down to 2035."

Ashley also said a new floodplain map could force thousands of properties to purchase flood insurance.

"The bottom line is: Minot residents alone will be spending $9 million a year in flood insurance premiums," Ashley said.

Ashley said if you are trying to secure a home, and you have a federally-secured mortgage, you are mandated to carry flood insurance, if the home is in a flood plain.

"That's up to $10,000 on your home," Ashley said. "The impact on the housing market is unbelievable, as well as on the local economy."

The committee chairman – Rep. Jim Schmidt (R-Huff) -- says he expects the issue to get a full debate in the 2023 Legislative session.

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