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Committee to look at water bill

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World Cement,

Congress is to take steps to address the needs of America’s dams, locks, flood protection and other water resources infrastructure this week. The Water Resources Development Act (WRDA) of 2016 reauthorisation bill is expected to be marked up by the House of Transportation Committee on Wednesday 25 May.

WRDA 2016 authorises projects and activities related to the key missions of the US Army Corps of Engineers, including developing and maintaining the Nation’s waterway infrastructure.

Key members of the US Senate and House of Representatives are highly motivated to complete a bipartisan WRDA this year as part of a commitment to return to a two-year cycle for WRDA bills.

The bill authorises 28 recommendations made by the Corps’ Chief of Engineers for water resources infrastructure projects. The two-year cycle of consideration of WRDA legislation allows appropriate congressional oversight of the Army Corps of Engineers. The legislation does not include earmarks, but de-authorises US$5 billion in previously authorised projects, offsetting the approximately US$5 billion in new authorisations. It also sunsets new authorisations to prevent future backlogs.

“We are glad that Congress is returning to a regular two-year schedule of considering WRDA reauthorisation,” said Pam Whitted, NSSGA senior vice president of legislative and regulatory affairs. “The two-year review cycle ensures regular consideration of the needs of the nation’s water infrastructure for which NSSGA members supply the base materials essential to water project construction.”

The Senate Environment and Public Works Committee approved a WRDA bill (S. 2848) on 28 April, although the committee still has not filed its paperwork. Also, the Congressional Budget Office has not yet released its cost estimate for the bill.

Adapted from press release by

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