The clock is ticking. Here's how you can weigh in on future of lock and dam​

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Friday, Feb. 21, 2019

AUGUSTA, Ga. (WRDW/WAGT) -- It's day 6 of the 30 day comment period regarding the US Army Corps of Engineers plan to remove the New Savannah Bluff lock and dam and replace it with a rock weir.

The Corps tells us, as of Thursday afternoon, they have received fewer than 20 comments. Since the comment period just opened a few days ago, they say this number is not unusual.

So how do you get your concerns to the right people? We're glad you asked.

E-mail CESAS-PD@usace.army.mil

OR, if you prefer snail mail, you can write to:
Savannah District, U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, Planning Division ATTN: Ms. Robin Armetta (PM-P)
100 West Oglethorpe Avenue
Savannah, Georgia 31401-3604

And here are the criteria they are looking for to help decide whether the Corps proceeds with the project as planned:

-public interest (This is where your comments to the Corps come in. How many people are worried about this? Right now, fewer than 20)
- National concern for both the protection and use of important resources
-Conservation
-Economics
-Aesthetics
-General environmental concerns
-Wetlands
-Historic properties
-Fish and wildlife (remember, a sturgeon pass-through is already mandated by another law that has to do with the Savannah Harbor deepening project)
-land use
-recreation
-water supply and conservation
-water quality
-energy needs
-safety
-consideration of property ownership
-environmental justice
-the needs and welfare of the people

As part of the 30-day comment period Savannah District officials plan to hold a workshop in the Augusta area on March 6 at 5PM where you can learn more about this report here.

You can also submit your comments to the Corps during that meeting. The location of the event hasn't been announced yet.

A representative for Congressman Rick Allen tells us he sent a letter to the Corps asking to extend the public comment period by 30 days to allow for additional time for the community to weigh in. We've reached out to the Corps to find out if they will extend the comment period.