Edwardsville, Ill., December 5, 2011... The St. Louis Metro East Levee Issues Alliance today announced that Dynegy Midwest Generation, LLC has donated $5,000 to support the Alliance's ongoing work to gain sufficient time to bring the Metro East levees up to new federal standards, in order to avoid the devastating economic impacts of being officially designated by FEMA as a special flood hazard area (SFHA). Dynegy, which owns and operates seven power generation facilities in Illinois and provides wholesale power, capacity and ancillary services to utilities, cooperatives, municipalities and other energy companies, has a power generation facility in Alton, Ill., which is part of the American Bottom region protected by the Metro East levee system.
The donation comes at a time when the Alliance is preparing to step up its efforts in response to the latest challenge in the levee issue: the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers' continued lack of cooperation on the permits needed for the Flood Prevention District Council to move forward with implementation of its approved and funded levee improvement plan.
"Our facility is right next to the Mississippi River, and we believe it's critical to the businesses and residents in our levee-protected communities that the levee improvements move forward in a timely manner to not only prevent increases in insurance costs but also to ensure the reliability of the levee system," noted Kathy Roemmel, Managing Director for Dynegy's Wood River Power Station in Alton.
Patrick McKeehan, executive director of the Leadership Council Southwestern Illinois and administrator for the Levee Issues Alliance, welcomed the donation. "We're now in our fifth year of this ongoing battle with FEMA and the Corps of Engineers. The Leadership Council has borne the brunt of the costs associated with keeping the public informed about impact of FEMA's flood map modernization process, while also keeping pressure on both FEMA and the Corps to cooperate, instead of impeding our efforts. We truly appreciate the financial support from Dynegy and encourage others who would like to support our ongoing efforts to join them in making a donation."
The St. Louis Metro East Levee Issues Alliance serves as the organizational framework for the regional, public/private effort to help prevent the unintended economic consequences produced by FEMA's update of the flood insurance rate maps in the Metro East region. While the Flood Prevention District Council is charged with improving the levees, the Alliance is working to eliminate the proposed designation of the levee-protected areas in the American Bottom as Special Flood Hazard Areas (SFHA) and reduce the economic damage produced by the related new insurance requirements and construction restrictions.
To learn more about the Alliance efforts, visit www.stlmetroeastlevees.org. The site makes it easy for individuals and organizations to officially join the Alliance, while also providing helpful tools for those who would like to support the legislative or outreach efforts in the coming months. For more information, visit the website or contact the Leadership Council at 618-692-9745.
The Leadership Council Southwestern Illinois is a member-based, economic development organization that has worked for more than 25 years to attract/retain jobs and stimulate capital investment through its coalition of leaders in business, labor, education and government. These effective partnerships have served as a driving force behind a number of successful regional economic development efforts. The Leadership Council also publishes the annual Market Review & Investment Update, which chronicles the total value of projects announced, under construction or completed each year in Madison and St. Clair counties, with the 2010 edition showing $6.56 billion in investments.
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