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STATE OF MISSISSI JIM HOOD ATTORNEY GENERAL July 18, 2019 Major General ‘Commander, Mississippi Vallay Division, President, Mississippi River Commission U.S. Army Corps of Engineers 4155 Clay Street Vieksburg, MS 39183, Re: Additional information regarding Flood Control Management Dear General Kaiser Thank you for meeting with us on June 26 to discuss the devastation from the historic flooding to the Mississippi Delta and the influx of freshwater into the Mississippi Sound, including the frequent and prolonged operation of the Bonnet Carré Spilway ("BCS.") | was encouraged to see all atthe table agree that a state and federal collaborative environmental study of the Mississippi Sound is essential and to hear that the Corps is, communicating with the Environmental Protection Agency regarding solutions for the. Mississippi Delta. | also understand and appreciate the broader issues that the Comps is facing, In follow up to our meeting, | am writing to request additional information as described below. ‘As | expressed, | am committed to engaging with federal, state, and private stakeholders to find an updated and comprehensive approach to flood control management that protects the ctizens of Mississippi. For too long, Mississipp vital interests have been neplected ‘when it comes to flood and river management, and | appreciate your invitation to testify before the Mississippi River Commission. Asis clear from the current situation, the Corps’ decisions do, in fact, directly affect Mississippi; yet the Corps has not included, for example, the Mississippi Sound in its previous environmental impact studies, The stalus quo is not sustainable. We must have a meaningful opportunity o provide substantive input into these issues going forward, and | was heartened to see that you welcomed our participation. WATER SULERS BLING « OST OFFICE ROX:220 » JACKSON, MSSM 20205-0220 TELEMIONE 01) 30-680 » TELEFAX) a5 948 Major General Richard G. Kaiser uly 15, 2019 Page 2 {As you are aware, our natural resources and our citizens on the Mississippi Gulf Coast and in the Mississippi Deta have been devastated. Therefore, at your earliest convenience, please advise me of the Corps’ plans to address the following 1. Reimbursement to tne Mississipp! Department of Marine Resources for thelr ‘expenses in responding to the increased opening of the BCS; 2. Expansion of the current limited testing being conducted by the Comps into a ‘more immediate and multidimensional study ofthe harm to marine resources in the Mississippi Sound, including but not imited funding of tests by the Department of Marine Resources and the Insitute for Marine Mammal Studies; 3, Reimbursement to Mississippi regions for the oss of natural resources and the economic harm from that loss; and 4, Incorporation of Mississipp! entties into river and flood management; ‘Secondly, | am keenly interested in reviewing the details ofthe Corps’ upcoming four rivers study of the Ouachita, Mississippi, Atchafalaya and Red Rivers and request information related to the study. | want to review the study’s parameters to both understand is scope and determine how best to advance Mississipp' interests as the Corps evaluates long- term flood-control management along the Mississippi River. The Corps’ analysis must account for the human, environmental, and economic impacto Mississippi, stemming from. diversion of the Mississippi River through mutiple flood contol structures. Therefore, please provide us with as much currently avaiable information about the study, as | Lnderstand a portion ofthe funding forthe study has already been released, |lam also seeking the Corps’ assessment ofthe necessity and viabilly of dredging areas of the Mississippi riverbed as a partial means of alleviating flooding issues. Specifically, | want to know the extent to which aggradation/shoaling is restricting the water flow in the \Mississinpi Rive, thereby allowing water to back-up during rainy or flooding seasons, Louisiana's Lieutenant Governor recently raised this issue indicating that a lack of dredging in authorized federal channels in the passes of the southern Mississippi River's contributing to the flooding, and he called on the Corps to appropriate annual funding for dredging, You advised that the Corps has been dealing with unprecedented flooding affecting the entire Mississippi River watershed. However, it seems that, if the riverbed is not adequately dredged, then these rainfall events will continue to exacerbate the problem. Finally, please provide any relevant background and any update on the Environmental Protection Agency's 2008 decision to veto the pumps originally planned in the Corps’ Yazoo ‘Backwater Area Reformulation, While you indicated the information surrounding this decision is “privieged," lam requesting any information thatthe Corps can share to assist Us in advocating for the pumps to the EPA and the basis for the alleged privilege. Major General Richard G. Kaiser July 15, 2019 Page 3 look forward to continued discussions with you on these matters and would appreciate a response no later than August 1, 2019. Sincerely yours, a