Congresswoman Mikie Sherrill (NJ-11) released the following statement after the US Army Corps of Engineers (ACOE) announced it would fully fund a construction project to address and mitigate flooding of the Peckman River Basin, meeting her request to provide $146.2 million to complete the project.
This funding, which was specifically requested by Rep. Sherrill, enables the ACOE to immediately begin moving forward.
“Our communities and families across Northern New Jersey have faced the dire, and, sometimes deadly, impact of devastating flooding in this region for far too long. This full federal funding for the Army Corps of Engineers to address and mitigate the flooding in the Peckman River Basin could not come at a more critical time,” said Rep. Sherrill. “I’ve brought the Army Corps of Engineers to visit some of these flood zones and hear the stories of residents who are impacted, discuss the issues with Mayors and local officials and see the damage it has done. ACOE’s work will go an incredibly long way in ensuring that our region is safer and more resilient for decades to come, and with the announcement of full federal funding, this project will soon be a welcome benefit to our local communities that are already working overtime to address the fallout of these floods. I want to thank Mayors Kazmark and Damiano for their incredible and steadfast advocacy for their residents and their partnership in helping make this funding a reality. This is a big win for NJ-11. I will continue to be a fierce advocate for flood mitigation projects and funding across the district.”
“The federal funding of the Peckman River Flood Mitigation project is remarkable! This is a long term and permanent solution that will provide so many residents the relief that they deserve,” said Little Falls Mayor James Damiano. “No longer will the residents in the Jackson Park section of town need to live in fear that their homes, their belongings, or their lives are in danger from the Peckman River."
“This funding for the Peckman River Flood Mitigation project is unprecedented. The full-funding of this project will save lives and property once completed. Too many times our residents have been devastated by flash flooding from the Peckman River - not only taking a financial toll, but an emotional toll each and every time it happens,” said Mayor Keith Kazmark. “This has been a priority since 1999, after Hurricane Floyd. A man lost his life due to flash flooding from the Peckman and just last year we lost another life, almost exactly 22 years later. We need to get this done before we see any more loss.”
Flooding from the Peckman River has caused multiple flash flooding events in Woodland Park and Little Falls. This includes flooding most recently during the remnants of Hurricane Ida in September 2021, which caused significant damage and tragic loss of life. Ida was a clear demonstration of the urgent need for this project.
This project would mitigate flooding through a combination of a diversion culvert connecting the Peckman and Passaic Rivers; associated weirs, levees and floodwalls; channel modifications; and nonstructural measures. After personally touring the devastation in Woodland Park and Little Falls in the aftermath of Ida and speaking with those whose lives were turned upside down by this storm, Rep. Sherrill petitioned the Biden Administration for full federal funding for the Peckman River Basin project. Additionally, at Rep. Sherrill’s request, the Peckman River Basin project was authorized for construction in the Water Resources Development Act of 2020.