Wednesday, December 6, 2023

Levee Board: One Lake Opponents Mislead

The Rankin-Hinds Pearl River Flood and Drainage Control District issued the following statement. 

Recently, Rankin Hinds Pearl River Flood and Drainage Control District (“Rankin Hinds”) became aware of the improper release of preliminary draft documents on the flood risk management project to a local activist by the Corps of Engineers. As the Corps stated, this information was pre-decisional and not ready for public comment or review. In fact, the Corps marked the documents preliminary and not for public release”. The information was prepared several months ago before extensive work between the parties, reviewing and analyzing various aspects of the project. The documents improperly released contain information that is incorrect, misleading, and incomplete. Using this information, without understanding all the documents, analysis and other work associated with the review process, could lead a reader to incorrect and improper conclusions.

There are sound reasons why the Corps of Engineers does not release pre-decisional information. The public can be misled about important facts and conditions of a project. Final decisions should not be based on early development concepts and ideas.

Opponents claim this pre-decisional information demonstrates the project is too expensive and does not perform sufficiently. But before accepting these claims, the public should consider the Corps’ statement - “The District would like to emphasize that the information contained in these materials is outdated and does not accurately reflect the current evaluation and our growing knowledge of the plan.” Projects of this scale and scope have many moving parts and require specific knowledge and understanding before a decision can be made. For example, consider that in May 2022 the Corps of Engineers completed a cost review of the project and certified the construction cost at $358 Million. Now the opponents want the public to make a decision, from an early draft review document that has not been vetted by the Corps of Engineers, that increases the costs by 10-fold over the certified construction costs.

Claiming that the non-structural alternative is the best choice, opponents of Alternative C do not provide the complete facts behind the non-structural alternative. This alternative would either remove people’s homes and neighborhoods or require their homes to be raised off the ground. The cost to raise homes would be approximately $200,000 to $500,000 per residence and the Corps only pays 65% of those costs. The remaining 35% is the responsibility of the local sponsor and the homeowner. Furthermore, what happens when it floods the power and water will be turned off and the homeowner must leave and pay for their stay in a hotel upon their return they must deal with the yard, street, driveways, food loss and other damages - potentially several times a year. They also ignore the downtown Jackson flooding that will continue under a non-structural alternative.

Without addressing each detail, Rankin Hinds will be available to members of the press or the public that wish to discuss the project. The Final Feasibility Study/Environmental Impact Statement and the Corps Draft Decision Documents will be made available to the public in early 2024. These documents will clearly, in detail, address costs, performance and impacts of the alternatives. At that time, the public is invited to study and comment on the findings. Please contact Keith Turner at (601) 965-1958 or (601) 594-6894 for more information.



Anonymous said...

I think it should be named 'Lake Charmin', for all the bathroom tissue sure to line its banks, first time (and every time) "The Most Radical City on the Planet" floods it with Raw Boo Boo.

Anonymous said...

Citizens and interested parties are welcome to view the Final Feasibility Study and Enviromental Impact sausages after they have been made.

The actual sausage making must happen behind closed doors, and citizens and interested parties must not know how the golden plates have been made, or who has helped engrave the plates, nor what is in them, until they are unveiled at the decreed time and place.

Citizens and interested parties are therfore informed that they should keep the faith that the interested parties making the sausage always do a good job.

James Eads said...

There is a simple, elegant, proven solution to Jackson’s flooding problems and will help downstream as well; a dry dam constructed upstream of Jackson on the Pearl River. This would basically be a giant detention pond on steroids. The Corps’ proposal for this type project in the 1980s, the Shoccoe Dry Dam, was killed by a state legislator from Carthage who erroneously thought it would flood his town. Unlike One Lake, there would be no associated development.

Anonymous said...

Remember a couple years ago when the rez got full and had to be released at max flow? Some houses in Jackson flooded, and everyone feared it would get a lot worse. And yet, during all that, not one environmentalist reared their purple haired head. Yeah, they crow loud and long when the sun is shining, but they run for the tall grass when things go bad.

Anonymous said...

Anyone that knows anything about Jackson knows that the city has a major litter problem and the sewer system is horrible. Slowing the flow of the river anywhere around the city limits is a horrible decision. It will be a disgusting lake. Also, any associated recreational areas will require contact security.

Anonymous said...

Which casinos are behind this? Gotta be a link somewhere. Last thing we need.

Anonymous said...

I was on the Pearl the other day. Went Jeep riding down to some beautiful sandbars just south of I-20. It could be an absolutely beautiful area if the "City with Soul" would stop dumping shit and trash into the river. What is wrong with those people? And why doesn't the EPA actually do something about it? Oh yeah, that would be "racist".

Anonymous said...

Flowood along Lakeland Drive would benefit greatly from flood relief.

Anonymous said...

9:45 PM, most simple, elegant proven solutions that come from the Feds usually don’t end up so simple and elegant, since their word means nothing and politics is always involved; wouldn’t you agree?

If not, maybe you should research the man made Mississippi River disasters that have devastated the state’s delta.

Of course the leftist propagandists at the Clarion Ledger et al will want you to believe it’s due to climate change (it used to be global warming but they had to change the wording, and who could logically disagree with “climate change,” since the climate has always been and always will be changing?).

Now if one wants to be honest, wouldn’t a real environmentalist with truth as their only agenda admit that the Mississippi River levees never should have been built in then fist place, since the delta was a wetland? And wouldn’t a real environmentalist tell us homes never should have been built in flood zones like those in NE Jackson?

Anonymous said...

Any future invest in Jackson is a waste of money.

Anonymous said...

The "Rankin Hinds Pearl River Flood and Drainage Control District" should be renamed "One Lake Booster Club".

Their lawyer is clearly embarrassed that the board was exposed to how unlikely the Army Corps is to approve Alt C. This may be a preliminary report, but it is very telling of where the Corps are at.

As expensive as it is, the 200 homes in Richland that the One Lake is gonna flood is the project killer.

Highwater Hal said...

Great plan! To prevent flooding, let's store a bunch more water right next to Jackson. Wow, that makes as much sense as punching a hole in a sinking boat so the water will run out. Dumb and dumber. Raise the levees and the houses. It does not cost $200,000 to raise a house unless it's a mansion.

Anonymous said...

As someone who writes technical reports based on scientific data and estimated costs, much goes into preparing, reviewing, and certifying these documents. Often, the draft report is prepared by junior staff members based on data tables and figures that have not been reviewed or based on incomplete data. Deadlines force us to get something drafted - even if it contains information gaps - so that the review process can get started. The review process allows senior professionals to examine everything from the raw data to the written conclusions and recommendations. Quite often, the senior professionals find errors in data collection and table/figure preparation that substantially change the written report. They can also find that the author of the draft drew unfounded conclusions or put in unsupported recommendations. Often the junior staff member does this just to introduce talking points that need to be addressed. Until a technical report has been reviewed, signed, and stamped by a qualified professional it is just a working draft that may be shot full of errors and have little resemblance to the final document.

Anonymous said...

Once One Lake is completed the water level of the lake will remain constant just like the Reservoir, unless it’s manually adjusted.

Anonymous said...

I can’t believe people are still holding on to the idea that this is something good for the metro area…. Jackson can’t manage what they have now (crime, garbage pickup, water system, crime, streets, potholes, businesses leaving, crime, corruption, etc) so let’s invest a ton of money to build them something else to destroy???? Lunacy!!! Has nothing to do with flood control and everything to do with greed of developers….

Anonymous said...

Follow the money.

Anonymous said...

CCJ and Meadowbrook rich guys looking to cash in for their Gen III with an unneeded, destructive, expensive, ineffective real estate development boondoggle at taxpayer expense. They howl as the fact that this could run us up 3 BILLION more in taxpayer expense to enrich them.

The Drain the Swamp crew mated with the Build in the Swamp (and floodplain) crew to produce a 4th Generation of Rich babies fed on GubMint Greens. Greens flow in direct from The Swamp. Courtesy RINO Roger and Bennie and Mikey.

Follow the money. Print more money. Cut your own taxes. And tell errybody you are a "self made man." What a joke.

Anonymous said...

How about dredging the river to make it deeper and wider??

Anonymous said...


So why aren't Enid, Grenada and Sardis kept at the same level year around ? How can One Lake possibly mitigate flooding if it is kept the same level constantly. Of course it's going to be manually adjusted....a lot.

Anonymous said...

Most people don’t understand how this project works or how the lake level will remain at a constant level.. The river channel will be deepened and widened below the lake. How is the Reservoir lake level maintained?

Anonymous said...

Who in their right mind (other than those making money on it) would want to spend all this money to share a lake with Jackson Mississippi ??? It makes no sense at all and the flood control aspect is total hogwash. I will guarantee you there's a location somewhere in Rankin county that you build a fine lake with all kinds of amenities for a small fraction of this money.

Anonymous said...

No one wants to mention that 1960 Jackson had this built to keep state (read:segregated) control instead of getting the USACE to build a larger and more effective flood control structure. They wanted a rich guy's (read: Jackson Yacht Club Et Al) playground for private fun at public expense. Truth. Yes, that is why it is not lowered in winter despite known winter and spring rains that always bring flooding potential. So that the "yacht-tays," as Jerry Clower would say, do not sag in their docks nor does Biff Big Bux II have to worry about catching a snag. Period.

So when a man points out that it was OK to lower it for salvania control (and I live on the Rez and it affected me), that coincidentally lowered or mitigated flooding, but, gosh, we can't have that affecting Palisades or the Madison docks on regular basis, no way no how. Uh unnnh. My property value.....

No cost partial relief, but these guys will never admit it.

What about the drought situation? Are we going to "starve" One Cesspool to keep the Rez higher? For water intake?

Who pays for this? (Of course, the middle class taxpayer, naturally, not the real estate and hunt club owners).

So when it turns out this cruddy plan could cost 3 Billion Dollars, they howl.

No, no, no!!!! say the used car dealers of NEJ. No way it'll hit that much! Honest!!!!

Put it in writing then. With your capital being exposed to cost overruns, not the taxpayer.

Tell us the truth about BONDS you want to issue. Tell us the TRUTH about the increases in Federal taxpayer subsidized flood insurance on the THOUSANDS of new homes you want t build in flood plain. Doh!

Tell us about your taxing authority you have hidden up your sleeve. Doh!!

Anonymous said...

Raising the houses is never going to happen. The homeowners would have to pay 35% of the cost. That alternative is floated by misguided people who OPPOSE ALL FLOOD MITIGATION. They do not care about property damage caused by flooding and they will never support any measures other than removing improvements from the floodplain. They hunker down in ultra conservative stances to prevent hypothetical risk to flora and fauna that even USFWS has categorized as acceptable. Now that you know that, you can evaluate their comments in the proper context. As for the design of the plan, it will work. No qualified analyst has ever concluded otherwise. The reservoir caused the problem and we're not draining the reservoir. It's time to fix the problem.

James Eads said...

7:52, I’m an engineer very familiar with hydrology and hydraulics, especially those of the lower Mississippi Delta, or Yazoo Backwater Area. What “man made Mississippi River disasters that have devastated the state’s delta” do you speak of?

And as far as a dry dam above Jackson, that is an old and proven technology, not some newfangled experimental concept.

Anonymous said...

12:18, sorry, should have said south delta; my bad!

Since you’re an engineer, what’s your position on the pumps?
Disclosure: have not been personally affected by the so-called “bath tub” flooding.

Anonymous said...


So if they're deepening and widening the channel BELOW the damn, truth be known, the one lake project is not about flood control at all because deepening and widening the channel would handle the flooding by itself. Right ? It is strictly a sham to use tax payer money to make money for some investors as it's always been.

Anonymous said...

@2:25 they said below the lake

James Eads said...

1:57, the south Delta flooding is not man made. Any time the area gets backwater flooding, it would be worse without the levees. The area is only a “bathtub with the stopper in” when the water on the other side of the levees is even higher. There is no logical reason not to build the pumps. The environmental groups’ opposition is laughable from an engineering standpoint. Seeing the ecosystem devastation caused by the flooding there will convince anyone it’s an environmentally sound project. Half the funds required to implement it will go towards purchasing land that will be forever protected when owned and managed by federal agencies such as the Fish and Wildlife Service or Forest Service. No wetlands will be drained. One point I will concede though, is that all wetlands benefit from occasional backwater flooding; in other words, being replenished by water full of dissolved and suspended organic material versus just rainwater. The Corps has agreed to allow some of that backwater flooding, but what water level to start pumping operations is one point of contention.

Anonymous said...


Below the lake = below the lake's dam.

Anonymous said...

Thank you 3:02. I'm thinking you probably knew Hank Burdine, recently deceased, Levee Board Member and nationally known expert on the Delta as well as the 'pump project'.

Hank was a good friend and a great voice of reason and knowledge (with a Delta accent) and he's been snatched right away from us.

Now we'll hear from the usual crowd...those who have never even been in the Delta and are not sure which counties are affected negatively by water or when - But they all have an opinion.

Anonymous said...

3:02 PM, thank you for the reply.

Man was responsible for building in the Delta flood zone just as man was responsible for building in the NE Jackson flood zones. Having said this, I now question my “this is what you get for building in a flood zone” position in 2019 after visiting with more than one property owner during said flood. Some claim promises of pumps were made prior to the Yazoo levee being built and had the Yazoo levee not been built the water would be spread out over a much larger area and the devastation not nearly as bad via the bath tub flooding. Would appreciate your opinion on this.

I’m no engineer but the math seems fairly simple that pumps could be installed at an elevation that COULD NOT drain wetlands so one can certainly conclude that the “environmental groups’ opposition is laughable” i.e. we have one more man made F up by building the levees then not installing the pumps.

The Delta, NE Jackson, the below sea level 9th ward in NOLA, all man made F ups proving true the old saying that “life is pretty simple but we (man) insist on making it complicated.” If only its author could have included the words “via greed” in said quote.

Anonymous said...

Not 'One Lake'.
Jackson's little mismanager, Lil Choke, has already christened his jetsam and flotsam shit-filled creeks, swales, ditches, lagoons and the resulting turbid water and greasy sewer coated banks of the Pearl:
Inland Beaches
(Rubbish, including old tires and rusting hulks of washers and dryers, notwithstanding).

Just a normal dude said...

10:14 AM - Enid, Sardis, Grenada & Arkabutla are food control lakes. Their elevation can vary by over 30 ft. For example, when low, the area of Grenada Lake covers 10,000 acres. When high, the size of Grenada Lake water is 64,000 acres. Barnett Reservoir covers 33,000 acres year-round. It holds 99,000 acre-feet of water. This means the average depth of Barnett is 3 feet (99K acre-ft/33K acres=3f). Barnett cannot be an effective flood control reservoir. It has no storage capacity. It has to release the same amount of water out as is coming in. Otherwise the dam is overtopped and the emergency spillway will open and an additional 100,000 cubic feet per second (cfs) of water will flow, unregulated. The spillway can discharge a maximum of 150,000 cfs with the gates wide open. It came close in 1979 to the emergency spillway opening (within an inch). Therefore, Barnett has to release the same amount of water that is flowing in. One-Lake would work the same way the Barnett does. In effect, the flow at the north end of Barnett, say just above Hwy 43, would have to flow out of One-Lake's spillway at the same time. The location of the One-Lake dam & spillway is the most important issue. If it is located south of the metro area it is effectively flood control by causing the inflow at Hwy 43 to simultaneously be released at the One-Lake spillway. Development along the shore of One-Lake is a side benefit. That is the gist of the plan for One-Lake being flood control.

Anonymous said...

How would One Lake have prevented the floods of 1979, 1983 and 2020?

James Eads said...

6:06, the pumps were always part of the Yazoo Backwater project, so the full protection the project was designed to provide will not be realized until they are built. The levees provide a lot of protection as is (Rolling Fork would have had several feet of water in 2011 if the levees were not there or had breached). Water would not be lower if the levees were not there. When the structures at Steele Bayou and Little Sunflower (the bathtub plugs) are closed, there is nowhere for the the water to spread out; the structures are closed because water on the other side of the levee is higher.

A wetland is a low area or depression that holds water because it has no outlet. The water level at Steele Bayou (the original proposed pump location) drops down naturally each summer way below the levels the pumps would operate at, yet the wetlands do not drain. Thinking the pumps could drain wetlands in the lower Delta would be like saying the pumps could pump all of the water out of a swimming pool in the back yard of someone’s house in Rolling Fork or Water Valley. Not gonna happen - physically impossible.

KF, sorry for hijacking the thread…

Anonymous said...

Why would ANYONE involved in the decision making on One Lake listen to someone like Mr. Eads who is offering a sound, proven technology that is simple, cost efficient, and of minimal ecological impact. Mr. Eads proposal would deny the governor and his donors an opportunity to get their hands on millions in federal dollars. You know, the Federal government, the one they accuse of being the problem, unless the contract dollars flow in their direction. The more expensive and destructive project must be chosen for the construction contractors, heavy equipment suppliers, real estate agents, middlemen of lake frontages, utility service, marina operators, fish baits retailers, and on an on, who will profit.

To hell with the endangered species on this section of the Pearl, which includes a sturgeon discovered where One Lake will lie. The silence of the MS Wildlife Fisheries and Parks administrators is damning. The field biologists at too terrified to make noise knowing their jobs and retirements are at risk with a governor with a reputation for vindictiveness.

Anonymous said...

Wow! Madison people hate One Lakes.

Anonymous said...

8:02 PM, thanks again for the reply. It has always been hard for us non-engineers to understand how pumps installed at an elevation above wetlands levels would, as the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) stated, “drain and damage up to 200,000 acres of ecologically significant wetlands—an area larger than all five boroughs of New York City.” Your swimming pool example seems like a simple explanation.

It appears the only plausible environmental argument may be your point “that all wetlands benefit from occasional backwater flooding,” which takes us back to the environmental question of whether or the Mississippi River levees should have ever been built in the first place. Regardless, it’s hard to imagine anyone disagreeing with the statement “homes never should have been built in flood zones like those in NE Jackson.”

It’s likely most reasonable people are all ears but until new information to the contrary can be presented, if you buy property in a flood zone, be sure to also buy flood insurance, and don’t ask tax payers to bail you out when your property in a flood zone actually floods.

Anonymous said...

This exchange of comments is relatively worthless without input from Hank Burdine.

So, here we go:

I don't know anything about this but here's my opinion.

I'm not an engineer but here's my thought from an engineering perspective.

If you are in a flood plain, don't build a house. See how simple.

If this pond is lower than the other one, it won't drain into it. Ain't that correct?

I drove through the Delta 34 years ago and feel qualified to speak on its terrain and industry base.

Anonymous said...

December 7, 2023 at 9:59 PM, I'm no Tate Reeves apologist, neither have I voted for him, but you have accused the governor of being vindictive. Would you please list, and link, proof of this? No, everybody knows, isn't proof.

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