A congressman who represents flood-damaged northern Missouri is blasting the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, saying it’s “long past time” that flood control is the top priority for the Missouri River.

U.S. Rep. Sam Graves, R-Tarkio, tours the MFA Rail facility near northwest Missouri’s Hamilton on October 8, 2018 (file photo courtesy of Congressman Graves’ office)

U.S. Rep. Sam Graves, R-Tarkio, the ranking Republican on the House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee, visited flood-impacted Brunswick on Friday. Brunswick, a Chariton County town of about 800, sustained severe flooding from the Grand River this summer.

Graves met with Brunswick officials to discuss flood recovery efforts. He tells Missourinet he’s losing his patience.

“This is so frustrating, it’s getting old, it’s getting tiresome, it’s affecting people’s lives, it’s affecting communities,” Graves says.

He says flooding has caused devastation across north Missouri, including Brunswick. Graves describes the Corps’ management priorities on the Missouri River as “backwards.”

“And it’s so frustrating, you just literally want to pull your hair out,” says Graves. “And we continue to pound on the Corps and push the Corps and we can’t seem to get anywhere with them.”

Graves agrees with Governor Mike Parson’s call for the Corps to manage the Missouri River differently.

Parson notes that he and fellow governors from Iowa, Kansas and Nebraska have met with the Corps, urging them to give states a seat at the table. Parson says states must have a significant say in Missouri River management.

Graves represents 36 counties across north Missouri. His sprawling district, which has more square miles than nine states, spans from the Missouri to the Mississippi rivers.

Graves’ district includes Brunswick, St. Joseph and Hannibal.

Click here to listen to Brian Hauswirth’s full interview with U.S. Rep. Sam Graves, which was recorded on August 7, 2019:

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