Funding will help finish Houston-area flood-control projects - KSLA News 12 Shreveport, Louisiana News Weather & Sports

Funding will help finish Houston-area flood-control projects

By JUAN A. LOZANO
Associated Press

HOUSTON (AP) - Officials in the Texas county hardest hit by Hurricane Harvey said Monday that $5 billion in federal funding that's been awarded to Texas in the wake of last year's deadly storm will finally help them finish major flood control projects, some of which have been under construction for years.

Harris County, where Houston is located, is getting about $500 million to finish the widening and other modifications of four watersheds.

The federal government is also providing nearly $14 million to pay for several studies that will look at ways of making the Houston-area more flood resilient, including one that will review the possibility of building a third reservoir in the area.

Local officials say the funding is critical to supporting flood-control efforts after Harvey.

The hurricane and the devastating rain that followed last summer caused an estimated $125 billion in damage statewide and flooded thousands of homes in the Houston area.

"It takes money. We all have to recognize that. There's no flood-control fairy that's going to come down and build these projects," said Harris County Judge Ed Emmett.

U.S. Rep John Culberson, R-Houston, said the new funding will be enough to "not only to finish every federally authorized flood control project in Harris County but finish them at full federal expense."

Harris County is also working to persuade voters to approve a $2.5 billion bond package in August that would pay for a variety of other flood-control measures, including home buyouts and building additional stormwater detention basins.

Emmett, the county's top elected official, said it's important that the Houston-area is seen as focusing on making flood control the top priority after Harvey and other major local flood events in 2015 and 2016.

"If we're going to continue to grow as a community, as a county, as a region, people are going to keep moving into areas where people haven't lived before," Emmett said. "And guess what? They are going to discover that they live on the Gulf Coast and we are going to have to protect them and we take that job very seriously."

About $3.9 billion of the funding that the federal government awarded to Texas last week will be used to improve a system of levees and seawalls in the southeast Texas cities of Freeport and Port Arthur and build 27 miles of new levees and flood walls in Orange County. This project has been in the works since 2004.

The levee improvements would reduce flood risk for both residents and commercial structures and industry , including refineries located in this part of the state, said Sharon Tirpak, deputy chief of project management for the Galveston District of the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers.

"What's important to remember is that (with) any of these projects we can't stop flooding, but now at least we have the funding to begin work with our local and state partners to help reduce the flood risk," Tirpak said.

Also included in the federal funding was $1.9 million to continue studying the feasibility of a project known as the coastal spine, which was first proposed after Hurricane Ike in 2008. That $6 billion to $10 billion project - also called the "Ike Dike" - proposes barriers to protect the area from storm surge coming into Galveston Bay, southeast of Houston.

A draft report and an environmental impact statement on the Ike Dike proposal are expected by late September, followed by public meetings. A final report isn't expected until April 2021.

___

Follow Juan A. Lozano on Twitter at www.twitter.com/juanlozano70

Copyright 2018 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

  • National, world weatherWeather and disaster coverageMore>>

  • breaking

    23 injured after explosion hurls 'basketball-sized' lava bomb onto tour boat

    23 injured after explosion hurls 'basketball-sized' lava bomb onto tour boat

    Tuesday, July 17 2018 12:03 AM EDT2018-07-17 04:03:48 GMT

    At least one person was transported to a hospital after a lava explosion near a tour boat off Kapoho on Monday morning, according to Big Island fire officials. 

    More >>

    At least one person was transported to a hospital after a lava explosion near a tour boat off Kapoho on Monday morning, according to Big Island fire officials. 

    More >>
  • Deadly fire shuts down key route to Yosemite National Park

    Deadly fire shuts down key route to Yosemite National Park

    Sunday, July 15 2018 2:04 PM EDT2018-07-15 18:04:23 GMT
    Monday, July 16 2018 2:54 PM EDT2018-07-16 18:54:32 GMT
    (Andrew Kuhn /The Merced Sun-Star via AP). Crews battle the Ferguson Fire along steep terrain behind the Redbud Lodge along Highway 140 near El Portal in Mariposa County, Calif., on Saturday, July 14, 2018.(Andrew Kuhn /The Merced Sun-Star via AP). Crews battle the Ferguson Fire along steep terrain behind the Redbud Lodge along Highway 140 near El Portal in Mariposa County, Calif., on Saturday, July 14, 2018.

    A wildfire that killed a California firefighter has grown quickly and forced the closure of a key route into Yosemite National Park.

    More >>

    A wildfire that killed a California firefighter has grown quickly and forced the closure of a key route into Yosemite National Park.

    More >>
  • Greenland village watches looming iceberg, weather forecast

    Greenland village watches looming iceberg, weather forecast

    Sunday, July 15 2018 11:02 AM EDT2018-07-15 15:02:46 GMT
    Sunday, July 15 2018 11:34 AM EDT2018-07-15 15:34:23 GMT
    (Magnus Kristensen/Ritzau Scanpix via AP). CAPTION CORRECTS PHOTOGRAPHER BYLINE In this Thursday, July 12, 2018 photo, a view of an Iceberg, near the village Innarsuit, on the northwestern Greenlandic coast. Scientists have watched an iceberg four mile...(Magnus Kristensen/Ritzau Scanpix via AP). CAPTION CORRECTS PHOTOGRAPHER BYLINE In this Thursday, July 12, 2018 photo, a view of an Iceberg, near the village Innarsuit, on the northwestern Greenlandic coast. Scientists have watched an iceberg four mile...
    Low-lying areas of a village in northwestern Greenland remain evacuated as villagers and local authorities monitor a vast iceberg for signs it could move closer or break apart, threatening the remote settlement.More >>
    Low-lying areas of a village in northwestern Greenland remain evacuated as villagers and local authorities monitor a vast iceberg for signs it could move closer or break apart, threatening the remote settlement.More >>
  • FloodsMore>>

  • Flooding cancels hundreds of trips to coveted waterfalls

    Flooding cancels hundreds of trips to coveted waterfalls

    Friday, July 13 2018 2:12 AM EDT2018-07-13 06:12:18 GMT
    Saturday, July 14 2018 8:12 AM EDT2018-07-14 12:12:40 GMT
    (Benji Xie via AP). This Thursday, July 12, 2018 photo released by Benji Xie shows a helicopter landing to rescue people from flooding on the Havasupai reservation in Supai, Ariz. Rescue workers were evacuating about 200 tourists Thursday who were caug...(Benji Xie via AP). This Thursday, July 12, 2018 photo released by Benji Xie shows a helicopter landing to rescue people from flooding on the Havasupai reservation in Supai, Ariz. Rescue workers were evacuating about 200 tourists Thursday who were caug...
    A popular campground at the base of famous waterfalls near the Grand Canyon was inundated by a flash flood that sent tourists seeking higher ground in trees and caves.More >>
    A popular campground at the base of famous waterfalls near the Grand Canyon was inundated by a flash flood that sent tourists seeking higher ground in trees and caves.More >>
  • Funding will help finish Houston-area flood-control projects

    Funding will help finish Houston-area flood-control projects

    Monday, July 9 2018 5:43 PM EDT2018-07-09 21:43:59 GMT
    Thursday, July 12 2018 6:51 AM EDT2018-07-12 10:51:15 GMT
    Officials in the Texas county hardest hit by Hurricane Harvey say $5 billion in federal funding that's been awarded to Texas in the wake of last year's deadly storm will finally help them finish major flood control...More >>
    Officials in the Texas county hardest hit by Hurricane Harvey say $5 billion in federal funding that's been awarded to Texas in the wake of last year's deadly storm will finally help them finish major flood control projects.More >>
  • Abe visiting flood-hit western Japan as deaths reach 176

    Abe visiting flood-hit western Japan as deaths reach 176

    Tuesday, July 10 2018 11:09 PM EDT2018-07-11 03:09:38 GMT
    Wednesday, July 11 2018 2:46 PM EDT2018-07-11 18:46:41 GMT
    (AP Photo/Haruka Nuga). Destroyed houses are covered with mud at a damaged area in Hiroshima, southwestern Japan, Wednesday, July 11, 2018. Rescuers were combing through mud-covered hillsides and along riverbanks Tuesday searching for dozens of people ...(AP Photo/Haruka Nuga). Destroyed houses are covered with mud at a damaged area in Hiroshima, southwestern Japan, Wednesday, July 11, 2018. Rescuers were combing through mud-covered hillsides and along riverbanks Tuesday searching for dozens of people ...
    176 confirmed dead after last week's heavy rains in western Japan as Prime Minister Shinzo Abe visits a hard-hit city.More >>
    176 confirmed dead after last week's heavy rains in western Japan as Prime Minister Shinzo Abe visits a hard-hit city.More >>
  • National politicsPoliticsMore>>

  • San Francisco to consider tax on companies to help homeless

    San Francisco to consider tax on companies to help homeless

    Monday, July 16 2018 9:59 PM EDT2018-07-17 01:59:19 GMT
    Tuesday, July 17 2018 12:14 AM EDT2018-07-17 04:14:25 GMT
    (AP Photo/Eric Risberg, File). FILE - In this Feb. 23, 2016 file photo, a man stands outside his tent on Division Street in San Francisco. San Francisco voters will decide in November 2018 whether to tax large businesses to pay for homeless and housing...(AP Photo/Eric Risberg, File). FILE - In this Feb. 23, 2016 file photo, a man stands outside his tent on Division Street in San Francisco. San Francisco voters will decide in November 2018 whether to tax large businesses to pay for homeless and housing...
    San Francisco voters will decide in November whether to tax large businesses to pay for homeless and housing services in a city struggling with income inequality.More >>
    San Francisco voters will decide in November whether to tax large businesses to pay for homeless and housing services in a city struggling with income inequality.More >>
  • Judge temporarily halts deportation of reunified families

    Judge temporarily halts deportation of reunified families

    Monday, July 16 2018 12:03 PM EDT2018-07-16 16:03:29 GMT
    Tuesday, July 17 2018 12:14 AM EDT2018-07-17 04:14:14 GMT
    The American Civil Liberties Union is asking a federal judge to order the federal government to hold off one week on deporting reunified families that were separated at the border. (Source: Raycom Media, file)The American Civil Liberties Union is asking a federal judge to order the federal government to hold off one week on deporting reunified families that were separated at the border. (Source: Raycom Media, file)

    The American Civil Liberties Union is asking a federal judge to order the federal government to hold off one week on deporting reunified families that were separated at the border.

    More >>

    The American Civil Liberties Union is asking a federal judge to order the federal government to hold off one week on deporting reunified families that were separated at the border.

    More >>
  • Trump questions US intel, not Putin, on Russia 2016 meddling

    Trump questions US intel, not Putin, on Russia 2016 meddling

    Monday, July 16 2018 12:57 PM EDT2018-07-16 16:57:16 GMT
    Tuesday, July 17 2018 12:13 AM EDT2018-07-17 04:13:33 GMT
    (AP Photo/Alexander Zemlianichenko). U.S. President Donald Trump, left, shakes hand with Russian President Vladimir Putin during a press conference after their meeting at the Presidential Palace in Helsinki, Finland, Monday, July 16, 2018.(AP Photo/Alexander Zemlianichenko). U.S. President Donald Trump, left, shakes hand with Russian President Vladimir Putin during a press conference after their meeting at the Presidential Palace in Helsinki, Finland, Monday, July 16, 2018.
    Trump says he raised election meddling with Putin, but says both sides to blame for bad relations.More >>
    Trump says he raised election meddling with Putin, but says both sides to blame for bad relations.More >>
Powered by Frankly