Michigan Senators Highlight Coastal Erosion and Dredging Needs

Michigan Senators Debbie Stabenow and Gary Peters have urged the Department of the Army and the Office of Management and Budget to help Michigan communities effected by high water levels in the Great Lakes and inland waterways.

According to the officials, extreme weather, flooding and erosion have led to damaged property, harbors, beaches, roads and infrastructure in Michigan.

The Senators asked that the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE) allocate funding to address coastal erosion and dredging needs, provide technical assistance with floods and storms, and fund a study to coordinate strategy on protecting the Great Lakes.

“Communities and coastlines across Michigan have been battered by flooding and erosion as a result of record high water levels on the Great Lakes and inland waterways,” the lawmakers wrote.

“It is imperative that the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE) continue to help our communities address these near- and long-term challenges that stem, in part, from the climate crisis.”

Maintenance Dredging

The Administration’s FY2020 budget contains significant gaps in funding to address dredging needs at harbors across Michigan.

“It is our understanding that there is a $4 million shortfall in the amount needed to dredge commercial harbors in Holland, Marquette, Monroe, and Ontonagon,” the Senators said.

In addition, another $8.42 million is needed to dredge 14 recreational harbors across the state, including: Arcadia, Charlevoix, Clinton River, Leland, Little Lake, New Buffalo, and Pentwater.

“We urge the USACE to include this additional funding in the work plan to ensure access to these harbors that are critical to our local and state economies,” the officials said.

Photo: Image source: DSC Dredge

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