U.S. House passes Water Resources & Reform bill
By Jonathan Sweet
October 25, 2013
Filed under News
The House overwhelmingly passed a bill authorizing dredging and other water projects late Wednesday.
The Water Resources Reform and Development Act of 2013 authorizes the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers to carry out its missions to develop and maintain ports and waterways. The authorization is needed to fund projects such as dredging of harbors and waterways, flood protection and environmental restoration. Although normally passed every two years to provide direction to the Corps, a bill has not been signed into law since 2007.
The bill, H.R. 3080, passed by a 417-3 vote. It will now move to the Senate, which passed its own different bill reauthorizing the Water Resources and Development Act, S. 601, in May.
“An issue that was important to address in this specific WRRDA bill was the process the Army Corps of Engineer’s used to approve of projects,” bill sponsor Rep. Bob Gibbs, R-Ohio, said in a statement. “Typically, it would take from ten to fifteen years to complete the studies to start projects that would be authorized through the Corps. WRRDA 2013 reduces that time to three years so that much needed projects can move forward to create jobs and grow the economy. The delay in project completion is harmful to both our economy and those using these transportation systems every day, along with increases in costs for consumers. With these reforms we are able to streamline the review process and cut bureaucracy out of the way