Could Cedar Rapids flood wall lose out to border wall with Mexico?
As a growing number of Republicans in Washington urge President Trump to declare a national emergency at the southern border, Iowa's Congressional delegation representing Cedar Rapids want more answers. This after multiple reports indicated the Trump Administration was considering taking money away from an emergency fund operated by the Army Corps of Engineers to fund the President's plan for a border wall with Mexico.
If that happens, it could jeopardize some of the more than $100 million in federal funding promised to Cedar Rapids for flood defenses. City leaders declined to talk on camera, but tell CBS2/FOX28 they are in contact with lawmakers in Washington. In statements from Senators Chuck Grassley and Joni Ernst, both say they are in communication with the Corps and are monitoring the situation. Grassley said it's difficult to get a clear answer before any national emergency is declared. Still, Grassley says he expects President Trump to honor his commitment to Cedar Rapids.
Congresswoman Abby Finkenauer, tweet her disapproval at reports the White House was considering such action. Rep. Finkenauer called it "disgraceful" that the President would consider stripping money currently intended to help protect cities like Cedar Rapids and Houston, and protect Puerto Rico from future hurricanes.
For now, local leaders are in a holding pattern, as more of the President's supporters, including Sen. Lindsey Graham and Rep. Mark Meadows, chairman of the House Freedom Congress, call on the President to declare a national emergency. Until that decision is made, all local leaders can do is wait and hope that their money is still on the way.