Last Friday, U.S. Senator Tom Carper, Senator Chris Coons, and Congresswoman Lisa Blunt Rochester, applauded the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers funding for the completion of three priority projects in Delaware.
The Congressional Delegation highlighted USACE fiscal year 2017 work plan, which includes a total of $40 million for crucial Delaware public work projects, including full funding of $29 million to complete the Delaware River Main Channel Deepening Project, $6.5 million to complete Bethany Beach nourishment and $4 million to complete Fenwick Island beach nourishment.
“Completing the Delaware River deepening project and repairing our retreating beaches are smart investments that will grow Delaware’s economy and continue to create jobs in the First State,” said Sen. Carper. “The president’s proposal to cut $1 billion from the Army Corps budget is a dangerous proposition for Delaware’s coastal communities and our economy, and I’ll continue to fight with my colleagues for full funding of the Army Corps in the months and years ahead.”
“The work done as a delegation for a number of years is finally coming to fruition. The Delaware River deepening project will continue to keep Delaware competitive for cargo shipping. The replenishment for our state’s biggest natural resources, the beaches, come just in time as hundreds of thousands of tourists visit our seaside communities. Securing the funding for these projects will pay economic dividends for years to come,” said Sen. Coons.
The Corps’ fiscal year 2017 work plan utilizes federal funds approved by Congress earlier this month in an omnibus spending bill. The bill funded the federal government through the fiscal year and included full funding for the Army Corps, amounting to $6.038 billion.
The Corps’ work plan includes the full $29,250,000 needed to complete the Delaware River Main Channel Deepening Project in 2018, which will allow larger commercial ships to access vital Delaware River ports. The completion of the Delaware River Deepening comes after nearly 10 years of federal investment to help the Port of Wilmington accommodate new, larger ships and ensure the port’s continued competitiveness in the growing global marketplace.
The plan also includes $6.5 million for Bethany Beach nourishment, to be combined with $15 million in Army Corps Flood Control and Coastal Emergencies (FCCE) program funding announced last week, and $4 million of supplemental funding to complete the Bethany Beach project. It also includes $4 million for Fenwick Island beach nourishment, to be combined with $4 million in Army Corps FCCE program funding announced last week, and $1.9 million of supplemental funding to complete the Fenwick Island project.
The Army Corps’ fiscal year 2017 work plan comes days after the president’s proposed fiscal year 2018 budget recommended cutting $1 billion, or 16 percent, from the Army Corps of Engineers.