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Marquart says Oxbow ring dike shouldn't have started before environmental impact statement

FARGO -- Work got underway a couple weeks ago on a ring dike to protect Oxbow, Hickson and Bakke subdivisions south of Fargo from flooding, but Minnesota State Representative Paul Marquart says that work shouldn't have started until an environmental impact statement was done. He says he can't support state funding for the project until the issue is resolved.

Diversion Authority Chairman Darrell Vanyo takes issue with Marquart's comments. He says the Diversion Authority is working for immediate flood protection for Oxbow and to protect the land values in the Kindred School District.

For now, construction will continue, but if Minnesota doesn't support the project, Fargo could lose 10 percent of diversion project funding. Vanyo says building the diversion without Minnesota's support would be very difficult.

Marquart said he still supports the diversion, but he says the environmental impact statement is crucial.