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updated: 6/3/2013 8:37 AM

Gov. Quinn open to Great Lakes-Mississippi split

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  • In this photo taken June 1, 2013, on Mackinac Island, Mich., members of the Council of Great Lakes Governors discuss regional policies on trade and water quality. From left: Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker, Illinois Gov. Pat Quinn, Michigan Gov. Rick Snyder, Ontario Premier Kathleen Wynne, and Indiana Gov. Mike Pence.

      In this photo taken June 1, 2013, on Mackinac Island, Mich., members of the Council of Great Lakes Governors discuss regional policies on trade and water quality. From left: Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker, Illinois Gov. Pat Quinn, Michigan Gov. Rick Snyder, Ontario Premier Kathleen Wynne, and Indiana Gov. Mike Pence.
    Associated Press

 
Associated Press

MACKINAC ISLAND, Mich. -- Illinois Gov. Pat Quinn says he's willing to consider placing barriers in Chicago-area waterways to keep Asian carp from reaching the Great Lakes.

Meeting Saturday with fellow governors from Great Lakes states, Quinn said separating the lakes from the Mississippi River watershed is the "ultimate solution" to prevent migration of Asian carp and other invasive species between the two systems.

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The Democratic governor's statement on Michigan's Mackinac Island represents a potential breakthrough in a longstanding dispute between Great Lakes states. Illinois and Indiana have resisted re-engineering Chicago's network of rivers and canals, saying it would disrupt commerce and cause flooding.

Michigan and four other states unsuccessfully sued Illinois over the issue. Scientists say if Asian carp reach the lakes, they could threaten native species and the region's fishing industry.

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