Devils Lake part of ND communityIn the Devils Lake (N.D.) Journal of Feb. 8, Fargo City Commissioner Dave Piepkorn had an article on Fargo area flood control. (In The Forum, Feb. 9.)
By: Lee Gessner, Penn, N.D.
In the Devils Lake (N.D.) Journal of Feb. 8, Fargo City Commissioner Dave Piepkorn had an article on Fargo area flood control. (In The Forum, Feb. 9.)
Piepkorn pointed out how well the state supported Fargo with its flood fight of 2009. He noted how important the flood control plan is not only to the city of Fargo but the whole state. He also said the state of North Dakota is more like a community.
Well, the flood fight of 2009 was a wonder to watch as the Fargo community held the Red River at bay. The community should be commended for the effort; it was something to be proud of.
I agree that Fargo needs a control plan and construction of the appropriate infrastructure should be done. I also agree that a project of that size requires financial help from the whole state.
But, North Dakota one big community? At one time I would have agreed with him, but today I don’t. I live in the Devils Lake Basin; you know, the place that is supposed to deal with a 15-year flood by ourselves. Granted, we have received money from all levels of government, but the solution, removing water from the lake, is fought at every turn.
The plans to divert the Red River around Fargo and the plan to bring Missouri River water to Fargo are solutions to your current and future problems. Money well spent. However, the money that has been spent here in the Lake Region has amounted to Band-Aids on a gaping neck wound. In my opinion, money wasted – money spent basically giving false hope of having a future here.
It boils down to jealousy on my part. I feel the Lake Region has been somewhat abandoned because of the size and scope of our problem. It is hard to see someone else receiving help when a 15-year problem really has been given lip service and a solution avoided. We seem to get slapped around a lot. Following the community theory, we must be the neighbor’s redheaded stepchild.
I realize the importance of the Fargo area. I support your efforts. But can you honestly say you support the Lake Region? All I ask is that while you prepare to ask for the whole state’s support, you are sure you have given the whole state the same respect you are asking for.
Gessner lives at Penn, which is west of the city of Devils Lake on U.S. Highway 2.