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Copyright © 2002 Express Publishing Inc.
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For the week of Sept 25 - Oct 1, 2002


Dredging to shift channel in Big Wood

Express Staff Writer

In an effort to decrease erosion along the Big Wood River near Bellevue, Blaine Countyís flood control district will dredge enough gravel from the channel to shift the flow to a more protected area.

The county commissioners approved a stream-alteration permit Monday for the district to remove about 6,000 cubic yards of material along a 1,000-foot section of the river just north of the Broadford Bridge.

Flood Control District #9 Commissioner Greg Mann told the commissioners that the channel is now dewatered along the riverís east side next to a levee.

"The river has not been up against the levee for at least two or three years," Mann said. "The flow has been forced over against the west bank, which is unprotected."

Mann said dead trees and stumps in the river will be anchored along the levee to provide fish habitat.

He said work will begin within two weeks.

Though supportive of the project, County Commissioner Dennis Wright pointed out that it isnít a permanent fix.

"Thereís been an awful lot thatís come down the river and been deposited in certain areas," Wright said. "Thereís nothing much else you can do but take it out."

Mann said the district will inspect the area after next yearís high water to see how the change affects the river downstream.

Idahoís flood control districts were created by state government, and the three local commissioners are appointed by the Department of Water Resources. Flood Control District #9 has an annual budget of $50,000, though Mann said none of the money was spent during the past two years due to drought conditions.



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