Please read this if you follow the Corps’ Budget for Coastal Risk Management Projects and Studies
While we wait a few more days before we get the Corps issues a Work Plan for FY18, the House Appropriations Committee will act Wednesday morning (watch here), on its recommendations for the Corps budget for FY19.
Click here for the details on the committee’s coastal funding decisions, but remember, Congress can’t add projects and studies not included in the President’s budget. That runs afoul of its own (ridiculous) ban on earmarks. Instead, look down the column for “Additional Funding”. There are two pots of money: Shore Protection Investigations and Shore Protection Construction. Congress provides that money so the Administration can add those projects it didn’t include in the President’s budget (left-hand columns of the spreadsheet) so that budget could look nice and lean. Overall, the committee proposes a Corps budget for FY19 of $7.278 billion, about $451 million higher than FY18.
The committee provides $2.5 million in additional funding for studies, but recent Corps guidance says that projects authorized for construction in 2016 can use investigations or construction money to do the Preconstruction Engineering and Design work. For shore protection construction, the committee added $60 million. It boosted the Section 204 regional sediment management program from $500,000 to $10 million but said that money for the 10 beneficial use pilot programs (not yet selected by the Corps) is to come from that pot and not from any funds set aside for navigation.
All-in-all, a very healthy $126.2 million for the Corps’ coastal programs compared to the House figure for FY18 of almost $109 million. No action yet from the Senate Appropriations committee, which came in significantly under its House counterpart last year on the Corps’ coastal program