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Horace man speaking out against Diversion Authority

Horace, ND (WDAY TV) - One Horace man is putting his voice and his home on the line, to speak out against the Diversion Authority.2 / 2

Horace, ND (WDAY TV) - One Horace man is putting his voice and his home on the line, to speak out against the Diversion Authority.

Marty Johnson says he learned from the news that if the diversion goes through, his farmstead would be gone. Now he wants to do everything he can to save it.

Marty Johnson/Calling out Diversion Authority: "This place is gone."

For Horace farmer Marty Johnson, the time to call out the Diversion Authority.


Is now.

Johnson: "These boys have an open reign on what they want to do, who they want to roll over and it's about time we stand up and say wait a minute."

Johnson says the 15 member panel has a loud voice.

Johnson: "They're misleading, they don't tell the truth, they tell what they want to hear."

But doesn't care to listen to rural landowners like him.

Johnson: "They would've rammed this thing down our throat and said live with it."

Based on the current line, the Johnson's mailbox sits smack dab in the middle of the planned diversion path.

Johnson: "So what you see of the farmyard will be gone."

It's not just about saving his 360 acres- but preserving the past. Johnson's great grandfather built this farmstead back in 1897.

Johnson: "Wouldn't you feel like you got slapped in the face that you weren't bright enough to make a decision?"

And he says he's not about to let anyone tear it down, to make way for Fargo flood protection.

Johnson: "Maybe I’m old fashioned but I think the North Dakota northwest living is a neighbor helping neighbor, let's work together instead of battling at odds."

Without at least a conversation.

The Diversion Authority has held several meetings with rural communities like Horace. They were not available for comment today.

Kay Cooley
Kay Cooley came to WDAY 6 News in September of 2012. She was born in a suburb of Chicago then made her home in Hershey, PA. Kay graduated from Northwestern University, where she received her bachelor’s degree in journalism. At Northwestern, Kay was a member of the Division I Women’s Swim Team and a reporter for the Northwestern News Network on campus. Before coming to WDAY, Kay was working for KVRR in Fargo and interned at ABC27 in Harrisburg, PA. When she’s not out in the field reporting, Kay enjoys being active and spending time with friends and family. If you have story ideas, questions or just want to say hello, feel free to email Kay at
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