House Passed WRDA Bill That Includes Advocated For Cost-Share Shift for Lock and Dam Construction
The U.S. House of Representatives passed the Water Resources Development Act (WRDA) today, including a shift in the cost-share from 50/50 federal government and Inland Waterways Trust Fund (IWTF) to 65/35 respectively.
“The WRDA bill passed by the House of Representatives today includes a cost-share shift that will make the federal government a more significant partner in new lock and dam construction. Moving from 50 percent funded by the government to 65 percent funded by the government will enable new locks and dams to become a reality much sooner," said Bill Leigh, President of the Illinois Corn Growers Association.
He continued, “Thank you to Representative Cheri Bustos for her leadership getting this cost-share shift included in the final bill."
The IWTF is funded by a fuel tax, making all river transportation users a partner in lock and dam maintenance and upgrades. Now, with increased partnership from the federal government, the IWTF funds will go further and can make a bigger difference for inland waterways users.
The matter passed by voice vote without opposition, making WRDA 2020 a truly bipartisan bill.
“Corn farmers need efficient transportation. ICGA knows this and consistently advocates for opportunities to build new locks and dams. After conferencing with the Senate and full passage of this legislation, we anticipate work to begin in FY21 to make the first new lock and dam start in Illinois a reality. Corn farmers in Illinois will celebrate on that day, after decades of advocating for upgraded locks and dams.”