Senate Passes Water Resources Bill

Date: September 23, 2016

House To Debate Differing Measure Next Week

In a recent 95-3 vote, the Senate passed the Water Resources Development Act, a $10.6 billion measure that the Washington Post reported included provisions to help Flint repair and replace its water infrastructure. The New York Times reported that the Senate bill includes provisions that would provide $100 million to help states with drinking water emergencies, “$70 million to subsidize loans for water infrastructure projects,” $50 million “to help small and disadvantaged communities comply with drinking water standards,” $30 million to reduce the incidence of children being exposed to lead, “and $20 million to develop a national lead exposure registry.”

Now that Senate action has occurred on the issue, the House is looking to address the issue. The Hill reports the House will consider is own measure, a $5 billion waterways bill designed “to boost the nation’s ports, harbors, dams and other water resources next week, according to Speaker Paul Ryan (R-Wis.).” The House version leaves out “$220 million in direct emergency assistance to address the drinking water crisis in Flint” and “$4.9 billion for drinking water and clean water infrastructure over five years,” both of which were included in the passed Senate version.

What This Means For Small Businesses

Infrastructure that is reliable and efficient is key to transporting goods and services small businesses count on. News that the Senate approved funding to maintain America’s vital infrastructure is positive, but it remains to be seen whether in an election year the House and Senate can effectively compromise to pass a bill that will strengthen infrastructure.

Additional Reading

The National Law Review also reported on the Senate’s passage of the Water Resources Development Act.

Note: this article is intended to keep small business owners up on the latest news. It does not necessarily represent the policy stances of NFIB.

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