As the flooding Missouri River wipes out thousands of acres of farmland in Iowa and Nebraska, Iowa Congressman Tom Latham says Congress will conduct hearings to examine the way the U-S Army Corps of Engineers has managed the waterway.
“Is it managed for flood control or is it managed to protect endangered species? Is it managed for recreational purposes upriver?” Latham says. “Those are questions that we’re going to have to investigate.”
Critics say the Corps is too concerned with the recreation level of reservoirs upstream, and doesn’t give enough weight to the concerns of downstream residents.
“Certainly I think the master manual needs to be revised, so that once again flood control is the number one priority,” Latham says, “as was intended when these dams were built in the first place.”
Deep snowpack and heavy rains earlier this year are blamed for high water levels in upriver reservoirs. The flooding may last well into August.