Gov. Jay Nixon today issued the following statement regarding the most recent developments on the flooding situation in southeast Missouri:
"Earlier this afternoon, I spoke directly with Maj. Gen. Michael Walsh, of the Army Corps of Engineers. Maj. Gen. Walsh informed me that the Corps has dispatched barges north on the Mississippi River to be in place at the Birds Point-New Madrid Levee.
"While the Corps must reach additional decision points before intentionally breaching the levee, we have carried out numerous plans to prepare for that contingency. Upon my orders, 630 Citizen-Soldiers and Airmen of the Missouri National Guard are in place in the region, and approximately 100 additional troops are on the way. They have been providing invaluable assistance to local law enforcement authorities in evacuating the floodway. The evacuation of some 230 residents in the floodway in Mississippi and New Madrid counties is now complete, and the National Guard has set up command posts and checkpoints around the evacuated area to secure the homes and personal property of those who left. We are prepared, if the Corps makes the decision to breach the levee.
"I traveled to New Madrid yesterday afternoon to meet with local elected and emergency response officials, and to again view the large area already impacted by flooding, or threatened with flooding. This was my second trip to southeast Missouri in the past five days. Accompanying me were Maj. Gen. Stephen Danner, the Adjutant General; Missouri Public Safety Director John Britt; and Col. Ron Replogle, Superintendent of the Missouri State Highway Patrol. Troopers from the Highway Patrol also have been assisting local law enforcement in patrolling area roadways.
"The people of southern and southeast Missouri who have been suffering because of these destructive floods should know that we will continue to provide all the state resources we are able to alleviate that suffering."