Sen McCaskill calls for closure in levee gap

Dec 31, 2012

Sen. McCaskill has teamed up with two Republicans to push for the closure of a levee gap.
Credit Kristofor Husted / KBIA

Democratic Sen. Claire McCaskill is joining two Republican colleagues in calling for federal agencies to move ahead with plans to close a 1,500-foot gap in a southeast Missouri levee, a project long delayed over environmental concerns.

McCaskill sent a letter in mid-December to the Environmental Protection Agency and the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, calling uncertainty and delays in the project "unacceptable."

The St. Johns Bayou and New Madrid Floodway Project got the go-ahead in 2006, but was halted a year later over concerns raised by environmental groups. The levee holds back the Mississippi River from agricultural land in the Missouri Bootheel region.

In September, Missouri Republican Sen. Roy Blunt and U.S. Rep. Jo Ann Emerson complained that the Obama Administration took action to stall the project.