521 Dirksen Senate Office Building
Washington, DC 20510
Water Resources Development Authorization Requests
Monday, October 15, 2012
The Water Resources Development Act (WRDA) authorizes navigation, shoreline protection, and environmental restoration projects conducted by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers. The last WRDA was enacted into law in late 2007 (PL 110-114).
Corps projects must go through two steps. First, Congress must authorize the project in a WRDA bill. Then, those projects must receive funding in one of the Energy and Water Development appropriations bills to proceed. Not all projects authorized in a WRDA bill are funded in an appropriations bill.
The U.S. Senate Committee on Environment and Public Works (EPW) is developing a Water Resources Development Act for the 112th Congress. After soliciting input from communities and relevant organizations in North Carolina, Senator Hagan submitted the following requests for consideration in this year's WRDA bill:
City of Asheville:
The Swannanoa River Watershed Flood Risk Management project would authorize the Corps to give the City of Asheville cost sharing credit for engineering and design work previously conducted. Giving the Corps this authority will allow the project to proceed more quickly toward construction.
Cumberland County / City of Fayetteville:
This project would authorize the installation of public sanitary sewer services in existing high density neighborhoods to approximately 1,560 properties. These areas are residential subdivisions built in the late 1970's or early 1980's. There was no public sewer in the area at the time of construction and the homes were placed on individual onsite wastewater treatment systems (septic tanks). Over the years, there have been a significant number of septic tank failure that have resulted in improper treatment of wastewater and harm to the enviroment.
Eastern North Carolina:
This project would authorize funding to help the Greenville Utilities Commission restore declining aquifer levels in order to ensure adequate water supplies. This project would benefit an estimated 95,000 people in several North Carolina counties.
City of High Point:
This project would authorize funding to support construction and stormwater improvement projects. The goal of this project is to take steps to eliminate flooding without transferring flooding problems downstream.
This project would authorize initiatives to restore a fully functional and supporting aquatic ecosystem. The project is anticipated to encompass in-stream restoration and enhancement, storm water Best Management Practices (BMPs) to address non-point source pollution, and wetland floodplain restoration.
Town of Morrisville:
In the last ten years, the Town of Mooresville's population has more than doubled. This project would authorize improvements needed to ensure the town has sufficient water and wastewater infrastructure capacity to support future growth.
North Carolina Inland Waterways:
This authorization would provide an opportunity to compete for federal funding for projects that provide additional means of transporting commercial cargo on North Carolina's waterways.
North Carolina and Nationwide:
The Army Corps' flood and coastal storm damage reduction mission is to provide safe and reliable projects that reduce economic and environmental damage and prevent loss of life from inland flooding and coastal storms.
Beginning in 2015, Carolina Beach will be the first project to reach the end of the 50-year period of federal participation. This authorization would ensure that Carolina Beach and other communities across the country continue to participate in federal coastal storm damage reduction efforts.
Surf City and North Topsail Beach:
This project would authorize funding to conduct a coastal storm damage reduction project. Shoreline erosion, coupled with recent storm events, have severely damaged or destroyed the primary dune system and the structures along the ocean shoreline, leaving the towns of Surf City and North Topsail Beach vulnerable to damage from future storm events.
West Onslow Beach & New River Inlet:
This project authorizes iniatives that provide protection from hurricane and storm damages. The project consists a sand dune to be constructed to an elevation of 12 feet, fronted by a 50-foot wide and 7-foot high beach berm. The berm and dune project will extend along a reach of nearly 5 miles.
City of Winston-Salem:
This authorization will enable repairs to aging storm sewer infrastructure, restoration of degraded stream channels, the creation of stormwater controls to improve water quality to receiving streams, and a reduction of peak flows that cause flooding and erosion to downstream properties.