FY20 Corps of Engineers Funding Passes House

FY20 Corps of Engineers Funding Passes House

June 20, 2019  | Jeff Davis

A $2 trillion package of appropriations bills for fiscal year 2020 that includes the water resources program of the Army Corps of Engineers passed the House of Representatives yesterday by a party-line roll call vote of 226 yeas, 203 nays.

As reported from the Appropriations Committee, the legislation appropriates $7.4 billion for the “civil works” program of the Corps, $357 million more than last year and $2.5 billion more than the Trump Administration proposed.

The House Rules Committee allowed 18 proposed amendments related to the Corps budget portion of the package to be offered on the House floor. But since freshman Rep. Chip Roy (R-TX) and a few other Republicans seemed determine to call for a roll call vote on every single amendment (and Rules made in order hundreds of amendments to the whole package), there was a lot of pressure on Energy and Water Development Subcommittee chairman Marcy Kaptur (D-OH) and her staff to group as many amendments as possible into “en bloc” packages, which would allow multiple amendments to pass with just one roll call vote.

The transcript of the debate on the Energy and Water division of the bill (what little there was of it) is here. The list of amendments offered is below. Clicking on the name of the amendment sponsor will take you to the text of the amendment. All page and line numbers in the amendments refer to this version of the appropriations bill.

Amendments Relating to the Corps of Engineers Civil Works FY 2020 Appropriations Offered in the House

Included in en bloc package #3 and agreed to by a roll call vote of 233 yeas, 200 nays:

Wasserman Schultz (FL) #65 – States that none of the funds made available by the Act may be used to issue a permit under section 404 of the Federal Water Pollution Control Act for the discharge of dredged or fill material from a project within Water Conservation Areas in the Everglades.

Included in en bloc package #4 and agreed to by a roll call vote of 382 yeas, 52 nays:

Norton (DC) #67 – Increases and decreases $5 million from the Investigations fund to instruct USACE to prioritize funding for the Anacostia Watershed Restoration Program.

Velazquez (NY) #69 – Increases and decreases the Army Corps of Engineers construction projects account by $45,000,000 to support Caño Martín Peña environmental restoration project in San Juan, Puerto Rico and combat the environmental degradation and persistent flooding that disadvantages communities abutting the channel, as evidenced by Hurricanes Irma and Maria.

Graves (MO) #70 – Moves $4 million from the Bureau of Reclamation and add $4 million to the Army Corps funding for investigations. The intent of this amendment is for the $4 million added to conduct investigations be used to study natural disasters that occurred in 2019, such as flooding in the Midwest.

Richmond (LA) #74 – Increases the Army Corps of Engineers Operations and Maintenance accounts by $4,000,000 and decreases the Administration Expenses account by the same amount.

Richmond (LA) #75 – Increases and decreases funding to the Army Corps of Engineers Operation and Maintenance Accounts by $75,000,000 for dredging activities.

Richmond (LA) #76 – Provides $5 million for construction projects under the Army Corps of Engineers for the construction of Louisiana Coastal Area Beneficial Use of Dredged Material restoration projects with an offset from Corps of Engineers expenses.

Welch (VT) #81 – Increases and decreases by $40 million funding within the Army Corps Construction account (Division E) to fund dam rehabilitation work authorized by Section 3202 of the 2018 America’s Water Infrastructure Act.

Bera (CA) #87 – Increases funding for the National Levee Safety Inventory by $3 million by increasing the Corps Operations and Maintenance account and reducing the Expenses account by the same amount.

Rouzer (NC) #93 – Decreases funding for the Office of the Assistant Secretary of the Army for Civil Works by $2,000,000 and increases funding for the Army Corps of Engineers Operations and Maintenance account by the same amount to carry out Section 1149 of the WIIN Act (PL 114-322).

Plaskett (VI) #98 – Increases and decreases the Army Corps of Engineers construction projects account by $100 million to support projects related to flood and storm damage reduction.

Blunt Rochester (DE) #101 – Adds and removes $1 million from the Army Corps of Engineers Investigations account for the purpose of instructing the Army Corps of Engineers to review all existing projects for which they are in arrears with project partners across the country, such as the Indian River Inlet project in Delaware.

Rouda (CA) #107 – Adds and removes $5 million from the Corps of Engineers construction account for the purpose of highlighting the need to reauthorize Section 1043 of the Water Resources Reform and Development Act of 2014 and to include necessary changes to the pilot program in its reauthorization.

Craig (MN) #110 – Increases by $1 million the funding for the Army Corps of Engineers Investigations Account intended to be directed towards the National Flood Risk Management and Flood Damage data Programs to address flood planning for disaster prone regions. Increases by $1 million the funding for the Army Corps of Engineers Operations and Maintenance account intended to be directed towards the Corps Water Management System (CWMS) to assist river flow tracking during flooding.

Craig (MN) #111 – Increases and decreases by $7.5 million for the Beneficial Use of Dredged Material Pilot Program for the Army Corps of Engineers.

Levin (MI) #113 – Increases and decreases funding for construction of certain river, harbor, flood and storm damage and related projects by $30 million in order to prioritize $30 million in funding for ongoing efforts to improve water quality in Lake St. Clair, Michigan, including by improving the Chapaton Retention Basin, a Macomb County Combined Sewer Overflow System.

Offered on their own:

Huffman (CA) #90 – States that none of the funds in this act can be used for the Army Corps of Engineers to finalize the environmental impact statement for the proposed Pebble Mine project – agreed to by a roll call vote of 233 yeas, 201 nays.

Graves (LA) #91 – Strikes section 106 of division E, which states that none of the funds made available by this Act may be used to reorganize or to transfer the Civil Works functions or authority of the Corps of Engineers or the Secretary of the Army to another department or agency – rejected by a roll call vote of 162 yeas, 269 nays.

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