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NRMCA Resiliency Initiatives Highlighted at Senate Hearing

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Last week, the Senate Environment and Public Works Committee held its first Water Resources Development Act (WRDA) reauthorization hearing of the year titled "The Importance of Enacting a New Water Resources Development Act". The hearing included several witnesses: Bob Portiss, director, Tulsa Port of Catoosa Port; John Swearingen, senior vice president of Marathon Petroleum; Rob Roberson, director of corporate logistics, Nucor; Norma Jean Mattei, president-elect, American Society of Civil Engineers (ASCE); and Kyle Makarios, director of government affairs, North Central States Regional Council of Carpenters.

The Army Corps of Engineers (Corps) has currently only issued roughly half of the implementation guidance from the 2014 WRRDA bill which included three provisions on resiliency drafted by NRMCA. NRMCA’s first provision was a directive to the secretary of the Corps to encourage the use resilient construction techniques when carrying out corps projects. Also included in the last Water Resources & Reform Development Act bill were two studies: one to be conducted by the National Academy of Sciences regarding the reduction on long-term costs and vulnerability to infrastructure through the use of resilient construction techniques and another to be conducted by the U.S. Government Accountability Office to make recommendations on the use of resilient construction techniques to reduce future loss from flood, storm and drought conditions. NRMCA coordinated with several of the witnesses on the panel to ensure that importance be placed through their testimony on the need for the Corps to follow through with delivering guidance on the use of resilient construction techniques when carrying out projects. In addition, numerous senators highlighted the need for including resilient construction in the efforts to mitigate from the destruction of natural disasters during the hearing.

For more information, contact NRMCA’s Kerri Leininger at

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