By BRENT MARTIN
St. Joseph Post
Congressman Sam Graves hopes a piece of legislation moving through Congress will address some of the structural problems which have led to recurring flooding along the Missouri River.
Graves says the House transportation committee gave bipartisan approval to his Water Resources Development Act, which he says addresses several issues.
“It moves us closer to a lower Missouri River flood control plan,” Graves tells host Barry Birr on the KFEQ Hotline. “It allows the Corps to start construction on flood control projects much quicker than in the past, particularly in repeatedly flooded communities.”
Graves says the legislation makes protecting communities and family farms along the Missouri and its tributaries a priority. He says it also gives communities help in planning and putting in place flood control projects and speeds up the approval process.
Graves says the Water Resources Development Act is an example of bipartisan legislation which he insists is still possible even in these politically polarized times. Graves asserts he might well be a staunchly conservative Republican, but that doesn’t mean he can’t work with Democrats in Congress. In fact, Graves, who is running for re-election, says members in Congress have to work across the political aisle.
“The way you get legislation done is by working with both sides,” according to Graves. “You come to an agreement and then you move forward. You can’t get anything done if you just go with a total partisan agenda.”
Graves says leaders might have made a mistake in shutting down the country due to concerns about the coronavirus pandemic, adding that isn’t meant to make light of COVID-19, a virus which has hit home to him.
“My daughter, son-in-law, and my grandkids have COVID right now and they’re quarantined at home,” Graves says. “I know just how tough this is, but this isn’t the first time we’ve had a pandemic in the United States and the United States is a pretty tough country.”
Graves says COVID-19 restrictions hurt independent small businesses the most, because they didn’t have any corporate money behind them.