Today, the House of Representatives passed the Water Resources Development Act (WRDA) of 2018, S. 3021. The passage of this bill authorizes key programs and projects that are critical to improving our nation’s water-related infrastructure categories. The 2017 Infrastructure Report Card graded each of these categories; ports received a grade of “C+,” while dams, levees, and drinking water were graded at a “D,” and wastewater received a “D+.”
This version of WRDA was agreed upon after negotiations between the House and Senate which ended in a conference agreement, or compromise legislation. The bill contains many of the provisions that ASCE has championed, including reauthorization of the National Levee Safety Program and the National Dam Safety Program, two programs designed to prevent dam failure and improve levee safety. In addition, the bill includes the reauthorization of the EPA’s successful Water Infrastructure Financing and Innovation Act (WIFIA) and the Securing Required Funds for Water Infrastructure Now (SRF WIN) Act, establishing a new financing vehicle for critical drinking water and wastewater infrastructure projects to help restore our nation’s water infrastructure. Finally, the bill includes a reauthorization of the Safe Drinking Water SRF reauthorization – for three-years at increasing funding levels, eventually rising to $1.95 billion in FY2021
ASCE is expecting the Senate to take up the legislation before the end of September. Please contact your Representatives to thank them for the passage of WRDA and urge your Senators to vote YES on WRDA by visiting our “Click & Connect” page. Passing the biennial WRDA bill is an ongoing a priority for ASCE. ASCE’s Key Contacts have been regularly contacting Congress urging its passage since the March 2018 Fly-In, where advocates met with over 270 congressional offices on this issue. We thank our Key Contacts for their hard work and support throughout the legislative process.
Read ASCE’s official statement on the House’s passage of WRDA.