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View Letter to the Corp of Engineers  | 16 Reasons Why to Deny the Corps Permit



228 West 3rd St. Suite # 210

Davenport IA. 52801 - 1900

I am writing you today to explain why we need immediate assistance on a delicate matter concerning our waterways and communities.


My name is Art Norris, and as the Quad Cities WATERKEEPER, I am proud to say we are members of Waterkeeper Alliance, the fastest growing environmental movement in the world. I come from five generations of American Farmers.  I am the only WATERKEEPER on the Upper Mississippi.


In three years we have filed 5 major complaints and were instrumental in stopping the world’s largest hog slaughterhouse from being built in Illinois wetlands. We brought greatly needed change, but it wasn’t nearly enough to stop what was going into our rivers from over-development. I learned that as development grew, it was creating an enormous amount of waste. Construction companies and trucking companies are using our rivers for landfills, claiming it’s all in order of flood protection.  After receiving many complaints about the dumping I investigated the Green River in Colona, IL. We were shocked at what we saw.

 This once beautiful river had been turned into a landfill of discarded building and road materials, combines, cars, with rebar sticking out of concrete everywhere. The channel was blocked with huge chunks of concrete that lay across the river blocking passage for humans as well as stopping fish from critical migration up this key spawning river with crystal clear water and a beautiful sand bottom.


When I became a Waterkeeper in 2009, I was told to look around my watershed and find solutions to difficult problems. I noticed that development was being permitted regardless of sensitive wetlands, the hundred year flood plain, or critical breeding grounds for wildlife. Upon investigating I found that Illinois had already lost millions of acres of critical wetlands in just 10 years, with only one million left.


Now they have applied for an after-the-fact permit for these egregious actions to our river.   Unless the public stand up and say ‘no’, they will soon receive this permit.


We have filed a complaint in Federal District court and are in great need of the public to write letters to the Army Corps of Engineers Demanding that an Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) be done and for this after the fact permit be denied. Please stand up to the Army Corps.


Comments concerning the Corps permit should be addressed to the

District Engineer. US Army Corps of Engineers, Rock Island District, ATTN: OD-P, Clock Tower Post Office Box 2004, Rock Island, Illinois 61204 – 2004. Mr. John G. Betker. (309-794-5280) may be contacted for additional information.

 Or please e-mail Mr. Betker at 



Remember to reference Public Notice Permit  # CEMVR-OD-P-20 12-1550


Also please go to our web site at and see photos, videos, press releases and consider a modest donation to our cause. We have invested hundreds of hours of work and expenses are becoming extensive, so please help out and write in your comments. Let members, organizations, friends, and family know. Together we can ensure this practice will be stopped.

This could be your river bank one day soon. Don’t wait until it’s too late.

Please look over our videos, photos, documentation, letters, and their recently applied for permit to the US Army Core of Engineers. Then you decide for yourself. Should someone be able to do all of this without confiding in any regulatory authority until a complaint is filled, and then after the fact, get it approved for a permit?

 The Green River is 89 miles long, with a beautiful sand bottom. Its location in Colona Illinois on what is known as the Ford, was crossed by Abraham Lincoln. We have also found fourteen species of mussels in this area, one being endangered. We know no other species is more threatened of the likely hood of extinction than mussels. They do a tremendous job of cleaning our water. We need to preserve rivers like this to give them a chance at coming back. Our children may need them.

Extended too: April 27, 2013


PDF permit on line. Please copy and paste link below into your web browser for full details.


Please pay close attention to the instructions, in paragraph 9, of this permit.

“9.  Who Should Reply. The Corps of Engineers is soliciting comments from the public; Federal, state, and local agencies and officials; Indian Tribes; and other interested parties in order to consider and evaluate the impacts of this proposed activity. Any comments received will be considered by the Corps of Engineers to determine whether to issue, modify, condition or deny a permit for this proposal. To make this decision, comments are used to assess impacts on endangered species, historic properties, water quality, general environmental effects, and the other public interest factors listed above. Comments are used in the preparation of an Environmental Assessment and/or an Environmental Impact Statement pursuant to the National environmental Policy Act. Comments are also used to determine the need for a public hearing and to determine the overall public interest of the proposed activity. These statements should be submitted on or before the expiration date  of April 27, 2013.

These statements should bear upon the adequacy of plans and suitability of locations and should, if appropriate, suggest any changes considered desirable. “

So please write in.

The Green River needs us.

Visit for more information. 

We only have days.





or call

822 1/2 E River Drive,
Davenport IA. 52803
Phone # 309-721-1800


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