Federal funding requested again for reservoir study after floodi - KWWL - Eastern Iowa Breaking News, Weather, Closings

Federal funding requested again for reservoir study after flooding

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Rivers across much of eastern Iowa are back to normal levels after dealing with  high waters yet again this year, but concerns are still flooding in.

Johnson County leaders are again urging that changes be made to the plan that determines the amount of water released from Coralville reservoir.

"So if they could release the water sooner, that would make a lot of sense," said Terrence Neuzil, Johnson County Board of Supervisors chair.

Flooding year after year has prompted this request, annually since 2010 from the Johnson County Board of Supervisors, wanting federal leaders to fund a new study of the Coralville reservoir's outflow schedule.

Neuzil says they're staring to see more and more deviation from the current water release plan that's been in place since the 1990's.

"When deviations take place too many times it's probably time to change the plan," said Neuzil. "They can release more water out of the reservoir to avoid the catastrophic event that it would go over the spill way."

The board of supervisors are requesting the U.S. Army Corps and the federal government to take time, reinvest and reexamine when and how much water the Corps release all in hopes of preventing another flood disaster of 2008, and avoiding even the less severe flooding we saw over the last two summers.

"Well this community is much better prepared than it was back in the 1990's for flood events or at least the rising waters on the Iowa River."

He says the board of supervisors' relationship with the Corps of Engineers is strong, however they're just looking for ways to reduce the miles of flood barriers, number of flooding evacuees and the millions of dollars they spend in the wake of Iowa River's rising waters.

The study is not cheap, said Neuzil, and that might be why it hasn't been added to the federal budget.

Assessing the management plan would not only be at the Coralville Lake dam, but also Saylorville Lake and Lake Red Rock, costing them more than $4 million.


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