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WATER LOG: Today Nita Lowey, Chairwoman of the House Appropriations Committee, introduced a new supplemental disaster appropriations bill

Here’s what you need to know about the Disaster Bill

The previous version, HR 268, stalled in the Senate over complications with funding Puerto Rico and other issues. The new bill, HR 2157, does support Puerto Rico, but it also includes $3 billion to address urgent needs resulting from the devastating floods in the Midwest. Hopefully funding for the Midwest is something that Republicans can agree on so that the bill can move forward and provide ‘prompt relief’ (not that Puerto Rico ever got ‘prompt relief’) to those affected. The bill is now in the House Appropriations Committee and the House Budget Committee. HR 2157 is not a companion bill to the Senate’s version S 572.

Here’s what you need to know about the Disaster Bill

Agriculture, Rural Development, Food and Drug Administration, and Related Agencies

  • Agricultural Programs — $3.005 billion. Payments for crop and livestock losses due to hurricanes, typhoons, volcanic activities, tornados, floods, snowstorms, or wildfires during 2018 and 2019.
  • Watershed and Flood Prevention Operations — $125 million. Financial and technical assistance to states and local sponsors to protect and restore watersheds up to 250,000 acres.
  • Nutrition Assistance Program for Puerto Rico — $600 million. Additional funding to continue disaster nutrition benefits in Puerto Rico during its recovery from Hurricane Maria. Nutrition Assistance Program for the Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands (CNMI) — $25.2 million. Additional funding for nutrition benefits in CNMI following typhoons in September and October. Nutrition Assistance for America Samoa — $5 million for disaster nutrition assistance for American Samoa. Study of Puerto Rico disaster nutrition assistance — $5 million for a study of the disaster nutrition assistance provided to the Commonwealth in 2017.

Commerce, Justice, Science, and Related Agencies

  • Economic Development Administration, Economic Development Assistance programs — $600 million. Flood mitigation, disaster relief, long-term recovery, and restoration of infrastructure in areas affected by major disasters in 2018 and 2019.
  • National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration Operations, Research, and Facilities (NOAA ORF) Repair — $3 million. Repair and replacement of observing assets, property, and equipment in areas affected by recent hurricanes, typhoons, and wildfires.
  • NOAA ORF Weather Forecasting Improvements — $25 million. Helping the National Weather Service improve its future forecasting and prediction of hurricane intensity, floods, and wildfires.

Defense

·         Marine Corps, Operation and Maintenance —$200 million. Addresses the effects of Hurricanes Florence and Michael on bases in each of the affected states. Air Force, Operation and Maintenance —$400 million. Addresses the effects of Hurricanes Florence and Michael on bases in each of the affected states.

·         In addition — Protects Defense funds from being used for the construction of a border wall.

Energy and Water Development, and Related Agencies

  • Army Corps of Engineers, Investigations – $35 million. Study potential projects to reduce risk from future floods and hurricanes.
  • Army Corps of Engineers, Construction – $740 million.
  • Accelerate construction of flood and storm damage reduction projects to reduce risk from future floods and hurricanes. Within this amount, up to $25 million is for continuing authorities’ projects to reduce the risk of flooding and storm damage. Within this amount, $45 million is to initiate authorized Corps ecosystem restoration projects that have incidental flood risk management benefits in certain areas.
  • Army Corps of Engineers, Damage Repairs to Corps Projects — $1.993 billion. Repair damages to Corps projects ($575 million for Mississippi Rivers and Tributaries; $908 million for Operations and Maintenance; and $510 million for Flood Control and Coastal Emergencies)

Interior, Environment, and Related Agencies

  • U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, Construction - $82.4 million. Repair and restoration of facilities, roads, bridges and assets associated with Hurricanes Florence, Lane, and Michael, flooding associated with Hawaii mudslides, and 2018 earthquakes. Within this amount, $50 million is for coastal resiliency grants.
  • National Park Service, Historic Preservation Fund - $50 million. Historic preservation grants to fund the repair of historic sites and properties damaged by Hurricanes Florence and Michael and Typhoon Yutu.
  • National Park Service, Construction - $78 million. Repair and replacement of assets in the National Park system that were damaged by Hurricanes Florence and Michael, Typhoons Yutu and Mangkhut, and 2018 wildfires.
  • U.S. Geological Survey - $98.5 million. Equipment and facility repair and replacement; debris and hazardous waste removal; and data collection in areas affected by Hurricanes Florence and Michael, 2018 wildfires and volcanic eruptions, and damage from the Alaska earthquake. Within this amount, $72.3 million is for the repair and replacement of equipment and facilities damaged in 2018 disasters.
  • EPA, State Revolving Funds - $849.4 million. Resiliency funding to bring drinking and waste water systems to a state of resiliency against future storms. Funding for states impacted by Hurricanes Florence, Michael, Harvey, Irma, and Maria, as well as Typhoon Yutu, and 2018 wildfires and earthquakes. Within this amount, $74.6 million is for the U.S. Virgin Islands.

EXTRA - The Dutch are far ahead of us – They’ve got plenty of things to share and we have plenty of things learn, one is called a Sand Motor. Where do you think this could be used in the US?

How are we doing? Please let us know your comments by emailing Dan at dan@waterlog.net .  

Thanks for relying on WaterLog for your coastal policy news!

Regards,

Howard Marlowe & Dan Ginolfi

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