Committee Passes Water Resources Development Act (WRDA)

The Transportation and Infrastructure Committee yesterday unanimously approved the bipartisan Water Resources Development Act (WRDA) of 2018, legislation that provides for improvements to the Nation’s ports, inland waterways, locks, dams, flood protection, ecosystem restoration, and other water resources infrastructure.

This approval marks the third Water Resources Development Act approved by the Committee under Chairman Shuster’s leadership, and follows the transparent process established under the 2014 bill (the Water Resources Reform and Development Act) that has led to a return to regular order and biennial consideration of this critical legislation.

WRDA 2018 (H.R. 8) authorizes proposed U.S. Army Corps of Engineers civil works activities and provides reforms to the Corps. The bill was introduced by Transportation and Infrastructure Committee Chairman Bill Shuster, Transportation and Infrastructure Committee Ranking Member Peter DeFazio, Water Resources and Environment Subcommittee Chairman Garret Graves, and Water Resources and Environment Subcommittee Ranking Member Grace Napolitano.

Today’s passage of the Water Resources Development Act of 2018 means great things for our Nation’s coastal communities and those located on inland waterways,” said DeFazio. “I’m glad my provision to ensure that funds collected in the Harbor Maintenance Trust Fund will actually go toward harbor maintenance was included in this legislation. This provision will ensure America’s ports and harbors are once again fully maintained, which will save and create jobs, grow businesses, and keep us competitive in the world economy.

This bill, together with the Disaster Reform and Recovery Act (H.R. 4) recently passed by the House, begins shifting from responsive bureaucratic delays to leaning forward, building projects, improving the resilience of our communities, improving our ports and navigation channels and restoring our coastal ecosystems,” said Graves.

WRDA is critical for providing flood protection, ecosystem restoration, port improvements, and water supply opportunities for our local communities,” said Napolitano.

WRDA 2018:

  • Authorizes locally driven, but nationally vital, investments in the Nation’s water resources infrastructure.
  • Strengthens economic growth and competitiveness, helps move goods throughout the country and abroad, and protects the communities.
  • Follows the transparent process Congress established under the 2014 reforms for considering proposed Army Corps of Engineers activities.
  • Builds upon previous reforms of the Corps to further accelerate the process for moving projects forward more efficiently and at lower cost.
  • Upholds Congress’ constitutional duty to provide for infrastructure and facilitate commerce for the Nation.Click here for additional information about the Water Resources Development Act of 2018, and here for more details about the results of today’s markup.