Jon Alverson: We agree, finish the pumps

By JON ALVERSON DELTA DEMOCRAT TIMES,

We had the opportunity to drive through the South Delta this week on a trip back north from Vicksburg.

It’s a sad state of affairs.

As the sun set and darkness fell on the flooded plain, where you’d normally see the scattered lights of houses among the fields, there was nothing.

There were cars parked along U.S. Highway 61 near boat trailers where people had ferried in and out from their swamped homes.

There were no tractors in the fields.

There was no equipment in the flooded barns.

The high water in the South Delta has turned it into a barren wasteland when it should be abuzz with activity this time of year.

And now we expect another extremely large rain event to hit our area in the coming days.

And again, the national news discussion is about the potential devastation to New Orleans.

While we wish no ill will on the great city of New Orleans, our friends and family have sat underwater for months with little more than a blip on the national news discussion.

Worst of all, this flood was completely preventable as floods like it in the future could be.

We saw along the side of the road several hand-painted signs crying out for relief from the water with construction of a pumping station near the Steele Bayou flood gates. Those gates are now closed again with more rain coming to the area.

While the construction of the $400 million pumping station project was denied by the Environmental Protection Agency years ago, there is a renewed call in construction of this project as floods have become a regular occurrence.

We agree wholeheartedly with those signs along the road and believe the pumps should have been built long ago.

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