WASHINGTON, D.C.—House Republican Whip Steve Scalise (R-La.) released the following statement after the House passed the Water Resources Development Act of 2020 as a part of the Bipartisan-Bicameral Omnibus & COVID Relief Deal:
“Today, the House passed the Water Resources Development Act of 2020 (WRDA) as a part of the year-end COVID relief package. After working hard to get this across the finish line, I’m proud to help secure WRDA 2020 as part of the final relief package. WRDA 2020 includes several provisions I added that will strengthen flood protection for families and communities in Southeast Louisiana, and improve the navigation projects essential for Louisiana’s economy and America’s maritime industry.
“Among these provisions, this year’s bill includes authorizations for deepening Baptiste Collette, the Houma Navigation Canal, and Port Fourchon Belle Pass, all of which will improve Louisiana’s ability to move commerce on our waterways, strengthening our position as a leading export state and a top producer of our nation’s oil and natural gas supply.
“An investment in Louisiana infrastructure is an investment in the American economy, and I’m glad I was able to secure major progress on the infrastructure projects that are so important to our state and nation. I look forward to President Trump signing this into law so we can finalize a WRDA package before the end of this year.”
Click here to see what stakeholders have to say about WRDA 2020.
The Water Resources Development Act of 2020 includes a number of provisions that benefit flood protection and waterway navigation in Louisiana’s First District, including:
- HSDRRS Renegotiation – Language that allows the State to renegotiate the terms of the deferred payment agreement for the hurricane protection system around New Orleans, which has experienced significant delays. Options for renegotiation include forgiveness of interest, recalculation of the interest rate, credit for investments made by the non-federal sponsor, and allowing the State’s contribution to be made without interest.
- Tangipahoa Flood Study – Authorization of a feasibility study for flood risk management in Tangipahoa Parish.
- Baptiste Collette Deepening Authorization – Authorizes the deepening of Baptiste Collette from current depths of 14 feet in the inner reach and 16 feet in the outer reach to depths of 22 and 24 feet respectively.
- Port Fourchon Belle Pass Deepening Authorization – Authorizes the deepening Of Belle Pass to provide access to the port’s planned deep-water facility for rig repair and refurbishment.
- Houma Navigation Canal Deepening Authorization – Authorizes the deepening of the Houma Navigation Canal from 15ft to 20ft.