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Burgum: Corps Reaffirms Feb. 22 Closure of Protest Camp
North Dakota Ag Connection - 02/17/2017

In a phone call Thursday with Gov. Doug Burgum, a top U.S. Army Corps of Engineers official reaffirmed the Feb. 22 date set by the Corps earlier this month for closing the main Dakota Access Pipeline protest camp in southern Morton County.

Maj. Gen. Donald E. "Ed" Jackson Jr., the Corps' deputy commanding general for civil and emergency operations, told Burgum the Corps will not change the Feb. 22 date as listed in a notice issued Feb. 3 informing protesters of the closure of the Corps-managed federal land adjacent to the Cannonball River.

On Wednesday, the governor issued an executive order reinforcing the Feb. 22 date for evacuation of the camp, citing the threat that spring flooding poses to human life and the environment. The order requires anyone occupying or residing in the evacuation area to leave the area no later than 2 p.m. Feb. 22.

To accelerate the ongoing cleanup effort at the camp, Corps officials indicated Wednesday they plan to deploy additional resources before the Feb. 22 deadline.

"Public safety and protecting the environment remain our top priorities," Burgum said. "We urge those remaining at the camp to allow cleanup efforts to continue and to vacate the camp as soon as possible before potentially life-threatening flooding occurs."

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