FYI: The Bill may go to the House Floor the week of October 2.
The House Committee on Transportation and Infrastructure, on Wednesday, voted unanimously to send H.R. 3080, the Water Resources Reform and Development Act (WRRDA), to the floor of the House. The bill includes provisions that would speed up the environmental review process for Army Corps projects, increase the amount of money spent from the Harbor maintenance trust fund, increase Congressional oversight over activities proposed by the Army Corps of Engineers, and deauthorize $12 billion dollars in proposed Army Corps projects. The bill also included an amendment that would enable Congress and the Secretary of the Army “to urge states to reach agreements [concerning water rights] through interstate compacts.”
After its passage, Rep. Bill Shuster (R-PA) lauded the bill: “WRRDA is the most policy and reform focused legislation of its kind in the last two decades. This bill contains no earmarks and makes reforms needed to increase transparency, accountability, and Congressional oversight of federal water resources development. At its heart, WRRDA is about jobs and improving America’s competitiveness. A strong water transportation network is critical to keeping pace with other nations that are improving their own infrastructure networks and gaining ground in an increasingly competitive global marketplace.”
The committee’s Ranking Member, Rep. Nick Rahall (D-WV), was similarly supportive of the bill. “This bill invests in our infrastructure and represents one of the only jobs bills that has been considered in this Congress,” said Rahall. “It boosts our ports, allows commodities to move more efficiently along our inland waterways, and enables our water transportation network to support increased economic opportunity. I hope that the full House can approve this measure with the same strong bipartisan spirit that our Committee has displayed in advancing it today.”
The text of the bill can be found here.