Flood Buyouts Have Pacific Junction Mayor Concerned for Town’s Future

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PACIFIC JUNCTION, Iowa — Heavy rains last week in South Dakota are causing flooding concerns along the Missouri River in western Iowa.

In Mills County, there’s concern about the rising water, while residents are still dealing with the floods earlier this year.

Water is expected to rise only in the rural areas between the interstate and the river. It’s not expected to affect towns like Pacific Junction.

“We are expecting to reach a height of about 29 feet over the next couple of days. Thursday Friday, that peak should occur,” said Sheri Bowen, Mills County spokesperson.

The big concern on Tuesday for Mayor Andy Young is that the word is out about the state-approved $3 million for matching funds for flood buyouts. Young said now he has four people actually living in town again and eight or nine are rebuilding to live there soon. He said with a lot of buyouts, that would not be good for the future of Pacific Junction.

“The tax roll would go away. Any piece of property that becomes bought out by FEMA can no longer be built on,” said Young.

Young said he hopes as more people get their homes rebuilt, others will see that progress and decide to stay in town.

Those who do go through the flood buyout might have to wait almost two years before they could see payment for the buyout.


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