The proposed project seeks to accomplish several ecosystem restoration goals. These include: 1) providing a diversity of underwater depths (habitats) for many of the nearly 70 fish species found in this part of the Mississippi River; 2) creation of topographically diverse areas to support hard mast trees that have been lost as well as a variety of aquatic and floodplain species dependent on these resources; and 3) a reduction in excessive sediment deposition to the Quincy Bay area which adversely affects the quantity and quality of the habitat.
There are three separate federal projects between RM 327.0 to 330.0 in Pool 21 of the Mississippi River. Two projects were authorized by the 1960 Small Boat Harbor authority: Bay Island Access Channel and Squaw Chute Small Boat Harbor. The third project, Quincy Bay (maintenance of a 5' deep channel), was authorized by the Rivers and Harbor Act of 1962. The projects are all located in Adams County, Illinois. Quincy, Illinois is located between RM 325.0 and 330.0.
The purpose of the Bay Island Access Channel was to provide easier upstream recreational boating access to the Mississippi River from the Squaw Chute Small Boat Harbor which is located approximately ¼ mile downstream of the access channel in the middle of Quincy Bay.
The Quincy Bay project consists solely of periodic dredging of lower and middle Quincy Bay. In 1987, Rock Island District completed the Reconnaissance Report of the Sedimentation Problem in Quincy Bay. Three major alternatives were considered: closure of the Bay Island Access Channel, selective dredging, and levee/berm construction to reduce sedimentation. The report concluded with a recommendation that no further action be taken due to the absence of high priority project benefits such as commercial navigation or flood control. In 1997, a 905b analysis evaluated the same alternatives as the 1987 report but also evaluated the opportunity for ecosystem restoration. In WRDA 2000, the Bay Island Access Channel was deauthorized. Work was undertaken under the Section 206 Continuing Authorities Program and completed in 2007 which determined that there was no Federal Interest under the Section 206 Authority due to the large scope and scale of the restoration that would be required.
The 2010 Energy and Water Development and Related Agencies' Appropriations Act, Conference Report 111-278, appropriated funds in the amount of $900,000 for dredging Western Small Boat Harbors. Since 2010, no additional funding has been appropriated for dredging small boat harbors in Rock Island District.
In fiscal years 2019 and 2020, the Upper Mississippi River Restoration Program (UMRR), based on habitat needs, is evaluating potential Habitat Rehabilitation and Enhancement Projects across the entire 1200 miles of the Mississippi and Illinois Rivers for future study. Quincy Bay is being considered in that evaluation. To date the project has been endorsed by the Fish and Wildlife Interagency Committee and the River Resources Coordinating Team for implementation. The UMRR Coordinating Committee will be considering in the spring of 2020, Quincy Bay along with several other projects in the five state area for implementation in the FY 21-25 timeframe, pending funding. These projects if endorsed will need to be approved for Feasibility study by the Mississippi Valley Division in 2020. However, UMRR is an ecosystem restoration authority and cannot address the ongoing issues with the Boat Harbor and Quincy Bay maintenance of the 5’ channel.
SI - Special Interest
River and Harbor Act of 1962
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Major Work Item Current Year
FY 2020: Work on hold pending funding.