"We're putting this toll road ahead of the safety of our levees. We have a fixation with putting a toll road in a place it doesn't belong."
By Marianne Martinez
CBS 11 News
After a heated debate, members of the Dallas City Council voted today to continue drainage work with the Trinity River Corridor project, despite a report from the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers that there are problems with the levees.
"This is a bad idea," said council member Angela Hunt. "We're putting this toll road ahead of the safety of our levees. We have a fixation with putting a toll road in a place it doesn't belong."
In 2007, the Corps of Engineers inspected the city's levees. The report it released yesterday said 34 of the 170 elements it examained were "unacceptable."
The Corps had previously said the levees were in good shape, but for this inspected it used new standards that were put in place after Hurricane Katrina.
"It's a divided issue," said council member David Neumann. "In my respective district, it was a divided issue. But the citizens have spoken and we're moving forward."
Still, it's not clear what needs to be done to fix the levees and how much it will cost. And some council memebers attitudes are changing as a result.
"It's going to be the last time I support anything with this without knowing what it's going to cost," said Mitchell Rasansky.
© 2009 CBS Broadcasting Inc.: www.cbs11tv.com
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