Blunt: Corps of Engineers needs new priorities

U.S. Sen. Roy Blunt, R-Mo., talks with reporters during a news conference Friday afternoon at the Carl Noren Missouri River access in Cedar City. Blunt says the Army Corps of Engineers is following a flawed plan.

U.S. Sen. Roy Blunt, R-Mo., talks with reporters during a news conference Friday afternoon at the Carl Noren Missouri River access in Cedar City. Blunt says the Army Corps of Engineers is following a flawed plan. Photo by Kelley McCall.

The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers manages the Missouri River by the book — its 438-page “Master Water Control Manual.”

But U.S. Sen. Roy Blunt told Jefferson City area business and government leaders Friday it’s time to change parts of that manual.

“I’ve been saying for 10 years that the current management plan is not the right plan,” Blunt said, while standing on the Conservation Department’s Carl Noren River Access boat ramp on the north bank of the Missouri, just west of the U.S. 54/63 bridges. “That was the one that was put in place in 2004, and we argued pretty vigorously before 2004 that this was not the right plan, that you’re almost planning for floods.”

The Corps has been taking heat up and down the Missouri, for not releasing water sooner from the six Upper Basin reservoirs.

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