Here’s what to look for when Congress acts on Corps FY20 Appropriations: We expect the House Subcommittee on Energy & Water Development Appropriations to meet later this month to come up with the House version of the Corps’ budget for the next fiscal year. The President proposed an average 31% reduction across all business lines for USACE, with the largest bite coming out of Operations & Maintenance. Also on the administration’s hit list: New Starts. There are none proposed for investigations or construction. The House has taken the first step by allocating total discretionary spending to each of its 12 subcommittees. The result is about $2 billion added to the total energy and water funding, with the Department of Energy accounting for 80% of the total and the Corps about 15%. The rest goes to a few other agencies. Until the funding bill gets put together, we won’t know how much of the $2 billion plus-up will go to the Corps since the president zeroed some energy programs that the House will certainly want to keep funding. Also, the president’s budget limited funding for navigation and flood risk construction projects to those with BCR’s of 2.5 to 1 or greater. According to the Congressional Research Service in a report just out, “Many congressionally authorized USACE projects would not meet that standard.”
House: The Energy-Water bill is expected to move as soon as this week at the subcommittee level, while the Interior-EPA bill is not due to be considered until the later part of May.
Supplemental – The House Rules Committee will hold a markup of HR 2157, Supplemental Appropriations Act, 2019, tomorrow (Tuesday, 5/7).
Climate – HR 9, the message bill that lets the Senate know the House is serious on climate change, is dead on arrival in the Senate.
What we know about an infrastructure package…
- It will not likely change the tax code, so you can rule out a change to the gas tax which hasn’t increased since 1993
- It will be roughly 2 trillion in total
Section 7001 Proposals – This is how you get a federal water resources project. It is the very first step. If you need help, please let us know. This section mandates a report to Congress for the development of future water resources projects. You can check out all the projects here that didn’t make it in last years report, go to the appendices. Don’t miss the deadline – August 27th, 2019.
EXTRA – Puerto Rico pledges 100% renewable energy by 2050 (Costa Rica can do it, so can we)