Thursday, May 17, 2007

Senate Passes Water Resources Development Act

Senate Passes Water Resources Development Act

May 16th, 2007 - Washington, D.C. - The U.S. Senate passed today by a vote of 91-4 the Water Resources Development Act. This legislation authorizes the Army Corps of Engineers to construct various projects for improvements to U.S. waterways, including improvement and expansion of existing locks on U.S. rivers, environmental restoration projects, and flood damage reduction projects. U.S. Senator Chuck Hagel (R-NE) supported authorization of several Nebraska projects that were included in the bill.

“This legislation addresses needed improvements in waterway infrastructure that will help Nebraska’s agricultural producers bring their goods to market. Additionally, this bill authorizes important projects in Nebraska addressing flood control, environmental restoration and Endangered Species recovery. The targeted programs address significant needs in Nebraska communities,” Hagel said.

The bill includes the following projects for Nebraska:

• Authorizes $12 million for watershed planning, water resources assessments, and environmental restoration and flood damage reduction projects in the Lower Platte River basin;

• Authorizes the Secretary of the Interior to conduct a study on how best to mitigate losses to habitat, recover Endangered Species, and restore the ecosystem in the Missouri River; and

• Authorizes the Secretary of Interior to perform Endangered Species recovery and habitat-loss mitigation activities in the upper basin of the Missouri River.

The Water Resources Development Act will now go to a House-Senate conference.

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