Entries Tagged 'Floods' ↓

What’s going on with the Flood Recovery Fund?

Have donations to the “Flood Recovery Fund” (set up by the City of Sioux Falls) been distributed yet?

Mayor TenHaken said $7,500 had been received, and that was VERY early on . . . perhaps within hours of it being announced. That’s the only quantifier I’ve seen about how much money came in.

The Sioux Falls Area Community Foundation has been designated as the collecting agency for the donations. While I’ve never requested any grant, etc. from this group, I know some people who have had other dealings with them, and were not happy with the results. Their board, donors & honorees are quite the “who’s who” of Sioux Falls – a real mutual admiration society, if you will.

I believe the SFACF has a $140 million dollar war chest (most of it liquid investments) which – in spite of their very nice ongoing charitable grants, scholarships & monetary awards – grows every year via donations & their investments.

Given the tremendous existing multi-million dollar donations this organization already has on hand, I question why they have been designated to receive and disperse these donated Flood Recovery funds. . . . as opposed to the Red Cross, another existing disaster relief organization, or even some municipal equivalent of a Go Fund Me page, for example.

I believe the citizens who donate to this Flood Recovery Fund deserve confirmation that 100% of the donations received are dispersed to deserving recipients, and that no portion of these donations get absorbed back into one or more of the SFACF fund accounts.

Will we ever know?

UPDATE: City considering buying flood prone homes

UPDATE: According to the Minnehaha County Historical Society FB Page, this would affect the WH Lyons House which is on historical record. It also appears that if your home is flood damaged you wouldn’t get full price for your house.

I guess some of my city moles are leaking stuff to other media sources, GOOD JOB. If we can’t fix open government from the front end we can certainly go thru the back door;

According to a letter obtained by KELOLAND News on City of Sioux Falls letterhead, the city is looking at the possibility of turning recently flooded land into green space.

The letter says the city is looking at the area of Rose and Lotta on the floodplain, just off south Minnesota Avenue, just south of Interstate 229.

The letter says quote “The City’s proposal at this time is to offer voluntary purchases of certain homes in this area.” The letter also says that details are still up in the air, and that the city council has to approve this.

This is actually a great idea. The city has done this in the past of other flood prone areas. The only drawback is that even if the city gives these homeowners a fair market appraised value, a lot of these homes are so modest they may not be able to afford to purchase another home, BUT it may get them out of doing costly repairs. This also may take several years to repurpose the neighborhood. It will be an interesting process to watch.

How’s those pedestrian bridges holding out?

Remember when there was all the discussion about the million dollar pedestrian bridge DT which Jeff S. (who owns Cherapa) forced the Council to follow through with?

At the Park Board meetings and Council meetings at that time there was lengthy input about how the Corps of Engineers wanted the old Railroad bridge removed but did not want it replaced with anything because in the case of flooding it would be an obstruction in the river which would catch debris and increase the risk of the river overflowing its banks.

This is exactly what was happening at Rotary Park yesterday.  So, how did they get approval for this when the Corps balked at the Downtown bridge for the very same reason?

Falls Park Safety Recommendations


If you read the report above (click on link) you will see they are recommending building viewing areas with railings. While I like the recommendations, I will will await the questions from the city council.

BTW, why did it take a new mayor before we moved forward with this? You don’t have to answer that question

GOD, “Stop voting for Republicans, and the flooding will end.”

BY Johann Hawkins


After I finished my interview with God (the almighty) I could only think of my favorite biblical verse,

“Again I tell you, it is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle than for a rich man to enter the kingdom of God.” Matthew 19:24

Was God telling us the truth? I mean, would he lie to us?

This interview got rolling the other day when a fellow journalist from a real newspaper in Sioux City told me, “A lot of tax dodging rich folks are upset about the flooding in Dakota Dunes.”

And I jokingly quipped, “Maybe their greed and ignorance caused it?”

And as Starfucks coffee shot out of our noses from the laughter (which, BTW, tastes better coming out then going in) I got a call on my Dingleberry. It said restricted number, I picked up anyway. The caller said, “Is this Johann? Nevermind, of course it is Johann, I watched you pick up the phone. This is God.”

At first I was a bit nervous, right before my friend showed up I was surfing porn on my phone and thought God was calling about a little intervention. He says, “About your comment, it is true, I always punish greed and ignorance with an occasional flood.”

I said, “Well, God, I was just joking.”

He says, “I’m not. Seriously. You wanna build your house in a slew between two river bottoms that are known for flooding, hey, you are rolling the dice. Well, I am really rolling the dice, and the house never loses (a muffled giggle is heard).”

I challenged God, “So what you are telling me is that you allowed this because ignorant people think they can control mother nature?”

“Well, Kinda.” God replies. “It has more to do with Republicans and their constant hypocrisy. You know, I’m not a fan of hypocrisy?”

So I said to him, “So these floods are punishment for South Dakotans voting in Republicans?”

God says, “Pretty much. Noem was the tipping point. I just thought over 30 years of them running the working class into the ground that it was a little payback time and what a better time and place like now? Do you think it is just by happenstance that Pierre and Dakota Dunes are seeing the worst of this?”

I was a bit taken back, maybe God was telling me the truth, maybe Republicans really did have it coming? So I asked him about the Army CORPS. “Some people are blaming the CORPS for mismanagement.”

“Well (chuckling) they aren’t the sharpest knives in the drawer,” God retorts, “but they couldn’t have created this mess all by themselves. Do you think New Orleans was a result of a Hurricane? Silly boy. It’s the classic ‘bait and switch’ by rich greedy Republicans, blame someone else for your stupid decisions. I mean, really, did the CORPS put a gun to these people’s heads and force them to build their homes in a historical flood zone? Nope. But a couple of people even greedier then them convinced them of a tax haven. Wonder how those tax cuts feel now while living in a hotel as your McMansion is destroyed?”

I was a bit surprised, and I said to God, “Kinda cold, don’t you think?”

God replies, “You Christians and your New Testament peace and love crap, have you read the Old Testament? You do know I am a Jew? Right?”

Well, that shut me up, momentarily, but I wanted to get back to the CORPS. I said, “What do you think of Bill Janklow threatening to sue the CORPS over this?”

God laughs, “Funny you bring up Bill, St. Peter and I were just talking about him the other day, but we won’t get into that. Who do you think Wild Bill is going to defend? Rich Republicans or government? I can’t wait to watch that spectacle, maybe that trial will actually end with putting his ass in jail once and for all.”

I was still uncertain what God was getting at, and if there was a biblical lesson to be learned here, so I asked him, and he replied,

“Stop voting for Republicans, and the flooding will end. Keep it up and you will find out just how much a grasshopper can eat.”


Biblical Proportions

More on the Mo

The Sioux City Journal has a great piece on the floods;

“Because people are lulled into believing floods will never come, people began building right up to the river. I think the building of Dakota Dunes symbolizes that,” he said. “I think, again, they’re putting their faith in the Corps of Engineers and dams in South Dakota to protect their property.”

As the Missouri River has flooded in recent days, frustrated property owners have criticized the corps for its management of the river. Many want to know why the corps didn’t begin releasing water from reservoirs earlier when it knew there was above-average snowfall in the mountains.

Why? Well because government doesn’t like change;

Col. Bob Ruch, commander of the Corps of Engineers Omaha Division, said the corps follows a master manual to set reservoir releases during the fall and winter so that once spring arrives and the snow melts, there is enough room to hold the influx of water.

Imagine if private industry worked like that? There would be no innovation, no new technologies.

“What do I want to see a century from now? No dams on the Missouri River. None.” Stephen Ambrose – Author of Undaunted Courage

I was going to write a satirical piece about all the taxpayer dough that is spilling into Ft. Pierre and Dakota Dunes to save the McMansions, but I wish no ill-harm on anyone, even the arrogant and the rich, so I will take more of a serious approach to the irony.

First let’s look at the projected flood maps of Sioux City.

Most areas are in the 4 foot range. A map south of Jefferson SD down before you get to Dakota Dunes shows 2′ over I-29.  More as you approach the Big Sioux delta (see all the maps here).

Now let’s talk about the rich benefitting from democratic socialism (from a South DaCola foot soldier);

The GOvernor’s press conference yesterday mentioned that the 2 blackhawk helicopters bagging at Dakota Dunes were borrowed from Nebraska. All 6 of South Dakota’s were federalized and overseas. For the war(s). Daugaard was trying to borrow another one to have 3 flying.  He said the streets in Dakota Dunes were designed to slow traffic and stuff (gated?) so the sand trucks could not get in there and turn around to dump a sand berm.  Plus the storm sewers empty into the river so it will come up those first into the development if they are not plugged.

Those conferences are a CYA with some tea-party words to live by about taking care of your own property.

One of the state engineers said that the spillway at Pierre would not be opened for this event unless it was a catastrophic shit storm.  So I think some of the old infrastructure is not all that trustworthy.

This may also be part of the problem (SNARK)

But governor DooGard only thinks we need to use all of our FIBERS;

“We’re strong, self reliant and we’re going to fight this flood with every fiber of our being and were going to do everything we can to minimize it’s effects,” said Daugaard.

Isn’t it ironic that Doogard talks about ‘self reliance’ while the rich Republicans that piss and moan about taxes are benefitting from the social benefits of those taxes, such as the National Guard coming in to protect their homes from flooding? How does socialism feel now? According to Dakota Dunes website, shouldn’t they be exempt from receiving these benefits? Sounds like they pride themselves on self-reliance and not contributing to that icky socialism;


· No personal state income tax
· No corporate state income tax
· No personal property tax
· No business inventory tax
· No inheritance tax
· No local sales tax

So who is getting stuck with the bill? We will. But as the above foot soldier points out;

If a state gave companies incentives to relocate to a corporate “city” with private security and no local government, who should get sued when the residents lose all the shit they own?

How can they sue the Feds when they don’t believe in what the Feds are doing? I mean, if you are anti-socialism, you can’t complain when a socialist entity like the National Guard fails to protect your homes. Right? Read more about Dakota Dunes and their backdoor buddy.

I merely posted this piece for discussion. Like I said above, I wish no harm on ANYONE, no matter who you are, rich or poor. I would love to put out a gigantic H/T to the foot soldier who provided me all of this info thru several emails. They will remain Anon. I would also like to say good luck to a National Guardsman I know who got called up to help with the efforts. They couldn’t have a finer person on the team.

Maybe we need to buy the Big Sioux river a pad w/ wings

We don’t seem to be concerned about transparency and conflict of interests in local government. We don’t seem to care about sewer backups, pot-marked streets and water rates being raised every 10 days. We even love to let the city spend millions on task-fucking-force after task-fucking-force on the events center (even though the public has yet to vote on a funding source).

But what do we like to get concerned about? Spring flooding.

Like a women’s menstrual cycle, spring flooding is pretty much gonna happen. Yeah, it may be off a few days, but it always happens. But it doesn’t stop our local government, officials and local media from blowing it way out of proportion;

They believe they have dodged a major bullet.  After weeks of preparing for record flooding, they now believe the flood threat for the city is over, at least for now.

While I should be having a sigh of relief, all I can do is laugh at how freaking ridiculous our city officials look making mountains out of mole hills. It would of took a civil engineer and a meteorologist about 30 minutes to figure out our flood threat was low. But hey, let’s divert attention from the real problems that exist in our city by talking about a woman’s monthly visitor.

Maybe we should hold a press conference about the threat of one-way streets downtown have on public safety. I see Iwegions and old people driving the wrong way all the time on them.

Is the flooding scare really about flooding or money?

Photo: Mike Fodness (from KELO-TV website, flood 2010)

I watched this debate unfold during the SF city council informational meeting, and I got the feeling that the feds were more concerned about money then they were about flooding, and after reading this article, I’m starting to agree;

But a process that had been moving rapidly suddenly stalled when the money request reached the Corps headquarters in Washington.

Oh, that’s right, up until this point the city of Sioux Falls has subsidized the Feds by paying for the feds levees and flood controls while contributing to the Corp’s infrastructure.

If we give them federal money now (something we all contribute to in our federal income taxes) we would be going against what we have done in the past. Better think this one through, we wouldn’t want to look like hypocrites . . .

At issue is a rule that forbids the Corps from mixing emergency funds with project funds, Cotter said. The city of Sioux Falls issued bonds in 2009 to complete the levee upgrades after years of budget delays from Congress. Officials in Washington question whether the temporary emergency upgrades would qualify as mixing of funds with the city’s plan to finish permanent upgrades.

In other words, the Corps had the money to give us to do the permanent fixes and if they give us money now, it will prove it. I have said all along paying for those upgrades, actually borrowing money for those upgrades was f’ing stupid. I actually pleaded with a few councilors not to approve it. Councilor Staggers told me their hands were tied. Boloney!

It’s simple. If the Feds (FEMA) is telling you the levees need to be raised and those levees are owned by the Feds (Corps) it only makes sence they pay for it. The city should not be involved besides upgrading the bike trails, landscaping, etc.

We were really suckered and it looks like we will get suckered again.