House passes Water Resources Development Act

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House passes Water Resources Development Act

A bill passed by the House Wednesday would provide $8.6 billion for federal water infrastructure projects.

The Water Resources Development Act (WRDA) authorizes projects by the Army Corps of Engineers to strengthen locks and dams, improve inland waterways, invest in flood damage reduction, and update water infrastructure.

Congresswoman Cheri Bustos of Illinois says the inland waterway system is critical to sending tons of goods to market each year and supporting agriculture producers. She says this is a crucial investment to ensure reliable water infrastructure.

Tracy Zea, CEO of Waterways Council Inc. in Washington DC, says they appreciate the work being done to leverage the inland waterways trust fund “to more efficiently provide construction of long-overdue locks and dams.”

Jeff Adkisson, Executive Vice President of the Grain and Feed Association of Illinois supports the bill, saying efficient use of the lock and dam system is a key advantage of grain movements in the Midwest.

The bill now moves to conference. The Senate version of the bill outlines $5.1 billion in federal funds for water infrastructure projects but has not yet come to the floor for a vote.