Congresswoman Doris Matsui wants the Army Corps of Engineers to change its levee vegetation policy. She introduced legislation Friday to force the Corps to allow vegetation depending on regional weather and geography. She says removing the trees here could weaken the levees in some cases.
MATSUI: "You can go to the Midwest perhaps and some of these levees and see a tree and you knock it down, right? But the levees there are flatter and broader. But, in California and in Sacramento in particular, our levees are built right on the river."
The Corps says there are variances, including one in Natomas. Under the exception, vegetation was allowed to remain on a section of levee to address wildlife concerns, if the levee were significantly widened.
Matsui says that amounts to building a second levee for no reason.
Her legislation is co-authored by thirty members of the California Congressional Delegation.