EWP Exigency Funds | Missouri NRCS
Emergency Watershed Protection Program (EWP) Exigency Funds Provide Assistance in Atchison County
The Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) in conjunction with the Phelps City Drainage District is utilizing $452,000 in Emergency Watershed Protection Program (EWP) exigency funds to remove eight-foot sand deposits left alongside the ditches of Highway 136 following the summer 2011 Missouri River flood.
EWP exigency funds, used only in the most severe emergencies, were granted when sand deposits ranging from six to eight feet endangered more than 6,000 people in Atchison County. Contractors had 10 days to make the repairs requested through the EWP exigency funds.
“The Missouri River flood left a lot of damage in its wake,” Assistant State Conservationist for Water Resources Harold Deckerd said. “The sand and silt that was washed down the river blocked the drainage ditches running along Highway 136. Any significant rainfall in that area could have potentially flooded the highway. In addition, a water line break left thousands of people without water and couldn’t be repaired until the ditches were cleared of the sand and sediment.”
Deckerd said the west ditch was cleaned out in nine days at a cost of $305,000 while the east ditch cleanout, which is under way, will take an estimated seven days and cost $147,000. He said that more than 2,000 acres of cropland benefited from the ditch clean out.
Deckerd added that plans are in the works to repair up to four levees in the northwestern part of the state with EWP exigency funds.
Last week, the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) announced that Missouri will receive $35 million in EWP funds to repair damages in southeastern Missouri caused by a spring 2011 flood of the Mississippi River. That funding is not available for northwestern Missouri because the allotment covered only damage reports received by June and northwestern Missouri damages were not known until later.
“We know there are great needs for assistance in northwestern Missouri, and NRCS will do all that it can with the resources and programs available to us,” State Conservationist J.R. Flores said.
For further information on EWP, please clickhere or contact the local NRCS office serving your county. NRCS can be found in the phone book under “U.S. Government, Department of Agriculture,” oronline.
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