Contact your US Senators and Congressman Regarding MS River

We are asking for your help to contact our US Senators and Congressmen; we are asking them to encourage President Obama to use his authority to declare an emergency situation relative to low water levels on the Mississippi River, particulary the area between St. Louis, MO and Cairo, IL.   Agriculture and other industries that rely on navigation on the Mississippi River to deliver cargo including fertilizer, grain, coal and petroleum are asking the Obama Administration to direct the US Corps of Engineers to do two things:
 
1.  Release measured, but sufficient, flows from the Missouri River Reservoir dams to maintain a 9 foot navigation channel on the Mississippi River.
2.  Waive federal rules in order to expedite the removal of rock pinnacles near Grand Tower and Thebes, IL.  These rock formations also threaten navigation in the current low water situation.
 
Here in Illinois, several of our US Congressman have been very active on this issue.  Congressman Aaron Schock (R-Peoria) has worked with many Congressman throughout the US, sending letters to the US Corps of Engineers and to the White House urging action on this issue.  Congressman Schock, Johnson, Schilling, Kinzinger, Shimkus, Hultgren and Roskam have also signed on to a letter to Illinois Governor Quinn urging him to ask President Obama to declare this situation an emergency due to the severe economic impact on Illinois.  We thank them for their leadership!  We are still working to get more Illinois Congressmen on board including Congressman Costello, Manzullo, Biggert, Davis, Lipinski, Dold and Rush.  We also need to ensure that Senators Dick Durbin and Mark Kirk hear from you regarding the importance of this issue to our industry and to all of Illinois.  
 
You can pick up the phone and call your Congresman and two Senators at their DC office urging action on this issue. Please ask them to support the letter from Congressman Schock asking Governor Quinn to urge President Obama to make an emergency declaration due to the economic impact on agriculture and other industries.  You can reach Senator Kirk at 202.224.2854 and Senator Durbin at 202.224.2152.  If you are not sure who your Congressman is, click here http://ifca.com/legislation   If the Congressmen listed above who already support all of these measures is your Congressman, please call them to thank them, and if otherwise, please call and ask for their help.  Our  national associations including The Fertilizer Institute and the Ag Retailers Association have been working diligently on this issue.  ARA also has a web-based system by which you can contact your legislators.  Do access that system, please click here http://view.exacttarget.com/?j=fe5c10797164027c7c16&m=fe641570716104747316&ls=fdf812757663027477147175&l=fe9815727762007e70&s=fe261d7774620175761670&jb=ffcf14&ju=fe1c1172736c03757c1476&r=0
 
These are unprecendented times with the river at these critical levels.  If navigation on the Mississippi cannot be maintained, navigation on the Illinois river for spring fertilizer supplies and grain exports is also curtailed.  Thank you for being an active member of the IFCA and participating in our government.  If you  have questions, please contact Jean Payne at 309.827.2774