Congress to Consider Two Infrastructure Related Bills
Energy and Water Appropriations: On Monday, the Congressional negotiators released the first of three appropriations bills to fund the government. Appropriations bills, or a continuing resolution to fund the government, must be passed before the end of the fiscal year on September 30 or the government will shut down. The bill released on Monday includes the Energy and Water Development bill, providing $7 billion for the water resources program of the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, $2.18 billion of which is detailed for construction. The total amount is $172 million more than FY18 and the construction amount is $98 million more than FY18. The legislation is expected to easily pass and be signed into law. This represents a significant investment in concrete-intensive public works projects. The legislative text of the package is here and the joint explanatory statement of the conferees (which includes funding totals for individual projects) is here.
Water Resources Development Act: On Tuesday, House and Senate committee leaders announced an agreement on the Water Resources Development Act, legislation to approve water infrastructure projects. (Federal projects and programs go through a two-step legislative process; they must first be authorized by federal law and then Congress must appropriate or make available federal money for them to be built.) The House almost unanimously passed its version of the water resources bill earlier this year; the Senate version did not get a vote. The House is expected to take up the newly negotiated bill this week, with the Senate taking it up thereafter. You can view the text of this bill here.
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