House Passes Bipartisan Water Resources Development Act

July 29, 2020
Press Release

WASHINGTON – Today, U.S. Rep. Bruce Westerman (R-Ark.) released the following statement after the House of Representatives passed the Water Resources Development Act:

“The 2020 Water Resources Development Act is a bipartisan, commonsense bill that works for America. Water resources tend to be out of sight and out of mind, but that’s exactly why WRDA is so important. When severe flooding hit Arkansas last year, the historic rains breached many of our levees and devastated our water infrastructure, destroying homes and farmland. We need legislation like WRDA to shore up our infrastructure, improve navigable waterways and ensure people across America are safe from flood threats. I’m honored to have spent the past year and a half working on this legislation with my committee colleagues, and I hope to see it quickly signed into law.”

Background

H.R. 7575, the Water Resources Development Act of 2020 (WRDA), is bipartisan legislation that strengthens America’s water transportation networks to promote prosperity and economic growth. As the lead Republican on the Water Resources and Environment Subcommittee, Westerman has visited ports and navigable waterways across the country to hear from local stakeholders while crafting the legislation.

Primary provisions in the bill include:

  • Adjusting the cost share for projects constructed on the Inland Waterways System to ensure expedited completion of ongoing and future projects.
  • Providing streamlined construction authority for communities that experience repetitive flood loss.
  • Supporting long-term, resilient and nature-based solutions to keep communities safe from future flood events.
  • Advancing the long-stalled MKARNS deepening project by waiving the need for a New START designation, protecting the water supply for users of Ouachita-Black System and helping prevent further bank destabilization along the Sulphur River.
  • Supporting rural communities and levee districts as they partner with the Army Corps of Engineers to keep their communities protected.

Read the full bill text here.

Click here to view Westerman’s floor speech on WRDA.

 

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