U.S. Sen. David Vitter (R-La.), top Republican on the Environment and Public Works Committee, made the following statement regarding a new report from the U.S. Government Accountability Office (GAO) on the project delivery and communication shortfalls of the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers’ flood control projects.
“Unfortunately, this report confirmed what we already know – that previous deficient cost-estimates and significant reanalysis by the Corps has led to several critical projects being delayed,” said Vitter. “I think the GAO provided a helpful study on why Corps’ projects experience cost overruns and delays, and more importantly, the report provides guidance on how communication with folks on the ground can be improved so that the Corps’ can become a more efficient steward of taxpayer dollars.”
Vitter has been at the forefront of pursuing major reforms to the infrastructure of the Corps, most recently co-authoring the Senate version of the Water Resources Development Act (WRDA), which is currently in conference with both Senate and House leaders.
The Senate WRDA bill includes a provision that would require the Corps to conduct a feasibility study in 3 years for no more than $3 million dollars and with concurrent levels of integration between Headquarters, Division, and District Corps officials, which would help abate delays in the study and construction of flood control projects. In December 2011, Vitter requested the GAO to audit the Corps.
Press Release, January 24, 2014