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US engineers plan millions in Mississippi water projects

June 12, 2018

JACKSON, Miss. (AP) — The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers released a work plan that includes nearly $56 million of water projects during this budget year in Mississippi, including some for flood control.

The state’s two Republican U.S. senators, Roger Wicker and Cindy Hyde-Smith, said Tuesday that the projects will improve the quality of life.

The list, released Monday, includes $3 million for maintenance dredging at the Mississippi State Port at Gulfport and nearly $1.2 million for maintenance dredging of the Rosedale Harbor.

For fast-growing DeSoto County on the northern end of the state, the list has $3.6 million for wastewater treatment and $1.5 million for a storm water management study.

The senators said $2.4 million is on the list for water supply work in Flowood and wastewater infrastructure in Starkville.

Also included is more than $27 million for projects intended to reduce flooding and erosion the Delta.

“These projects in the Army Corps work plan demonstrate the far-reaching impact of the Mississippi River and Tributaries project as a vehicle for critical water and port infrastructure investment,” Wicker said in a news release. “The additional investments in water and wastewater infrastructure will pay dividends for Mississippi’s communities.”

Hyde-Smith said in the same release: “Mississippians will see benefits from the Army Corps of Engineers decision to apply additional funding to water, wastewater and other infrastructure programs in our state.”

Chris Gallegos, a spokesman for Hyde-Smith, said the list does not include money for a massive pump project that has long been debated in the Lower Yazoo Basin in the Delta.

Supporters say the pump project would help with flood control, but critics say it would destroy up to 200,000 acres of wetlands and would benefit only a small number of landowners. The pump project’s cost estimate has varied, with figures reaching $220 million.

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