USA: Congressman Calls on Senate to Protect Funding for Dredging and Flood Control Projects

Congressman John Tierney opposed the Energy and Water Appropriations Bill when it came to the House Floor this afternoon for a vote. Earlier this week, Congressman Tierney offered an amendment to the bill that would have restored cuts to the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers budget. These cuts would negatively impact the Corps’ ability to conduct critical dredging and flood control work in communities across the country, including those in Congressman Tierney’s district. Following the U.S. House of Representatives passing the bill with these cuts, Congressman Tierney called on the Senate to make the necessary changes.

For years, I have worked with the professionals at the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers on important dredging, flood control, and erosion mitigation projects in Peabody, Salisbury, Newburyport, Plum Island and elsewhere in my district. Knowing of the agency’s critical work, I offered an amendment to this bill that would have restored the proposed cuts to the Army Corps’ budget. Appropriately funding Army Corps activities is essential to our economy and creates well-paying jobs for hard working Americans,” Congressman Tierney said.

On Tuesday, Congressman Tierney’s amendment to fund two main Army Corps accounts (construction and operations & maintenance) at the Fiscal Year 2011 level was defeated on a mostly-party line vote. Tierney’s amendment was offset with an equivalent reduction to the Department of Energy’s Nuclear Energy and Fossil Energy Research and Development programs.

My amendment presented a reasonable choice: maintain last year’s level of funding for the Army Corps of Engineers to ensure we do not diminish our commitment to improving our water infrastructure and keeping our nation’s marine transportation system viable, and pay for it through reducing funding for nuclear and fossil energy programs. Unfortunately, nearly all of my Republican colleagues opposed my amendment and, in doing so, further aligned themselves with the nuclear and fossil energy industries. This is yet another sign of the House GOP’s misguided priorities. I urge the Senate to take the appropriate steps to restore these funds,” Tierney added.

Congressman Tierney spoke in support of protecting local Army Corps projects on the House Floor this week.

[mappress]

Source: tierney, July 19, 2011

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