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The Fargo-Moorhead Diversion Board of Authority met today and discussed recent discussions between the Governors’ offices of North Dakota and Minnesota regarding ongoing litigation and flood protection for the Fargo-Moorhead community.

In order to facilitate more collaboration with the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources (MDNR), the Authority took action to drop the Contested Case Hearing in Minnesota through withdrawal of its application for a permit on the Project as proposed. The Contested Case Hearing was requested after MDNR’s denial of the permit for the FM Diversion Project.

“We know we are going to have to make some changes to the Project. We want to work together with the State of Minnesota and all interested parties on a flood protection project that can serve the interests of both states and the affected communities,” Fargo Mayor and Chair of the Diversion Authority Tim Mahoney said. “We realize we cannot do that genuinely if we are still in ongoing litigation over the original permit as proposed.”

A permit for the FM Diversion Project was applied for from the State Minnesota in February of 2016, and was subsequently denied by the MDNR in October of the same year.

“Solving problems through litigation is not ideal,” Moorhead Mayor and vice chair of the Board Del Rae Williams said. “It is my hope that the parties can come together and ultimately submit a new permit that the DNR will approve.”