Two Scott County levees accredited by FEMA

Thursday, August 2, 2012

BENTON, Mo. -- Scott County officials have one less thing to worry about: the levee.

Presiding Commissioner Jamie Burger said during the regular county Commission meeting that the county recently reviewed a letter from the Federal Emergency Management Agency regarding the levee from Commerce, Mo., to Birds Point -- and it was good news.

"We are accredited, which is a big relief for Scott County," Burger said. "This is something we've been working on since our initial meeting [on the subject] in December 2008 with FEMA officials from Kansas City, the Corps of Engineers and local officials."

In a July 13 letter addressed to Oliver Kirkpatrick, president of the Levee District No. 2 board, Richard Leonard, chief of FEMA's risk analysis branch, advised his agency is "pleased to inform you that we have accepted the accreditation package the U.S. Corps of Engineers, Memphis District, submitted for the Commerce to Birds Point Levee."

"It's been a little while coming," Burger said of the decision.

Levee accreditation was requested by FEMA as part of the agency's countrywide work on its Digital Flood Insurance Rate Map.

Without accreditation for the levee, "they could have looked at it like the levee wasn't there," Burger said.

He said that in addition to Scott County's levee being accredited, the levee for the Little River Drainage District's diversion channel has also received accreditation.

"Those two levees protect an enormous amount of residents and acreage in Scott County and for those two levees to be accredited should be a sigh of relief for everybody," Burger said.

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