2013-05-02 National Governors Association

Water Resources Development Act Reauthorization

The Honorable Harry Reid
Majority Leader
U.S. Senate
Washington, D.C. 20510

The Honorable Mitch McConnell
Minority Leader
U.S. Senate
Washington, D.C. 20510

The Honorable John Boehner
Speaker of the House
U.S. House of Representatives
Washington, D.C. 20515

The Honorable Nancy Pelosi
Minority Leader
U.S. House of Representatives
Washington, D.C. 20515

Dear Majority Leader Reid, Senator McConnell, Speaker Boehner and Representative Pelosi:

Governors appreciate the Senate’s bipartisan approach to develop the Water Resources Development Act (WRDA) of 2013 and urge Congress to move forward with legislation to address the nation’s water infrastructure needs. More than five years have passed since the enactment of WRDA legislation. Governors recognize that responsible stewardship of important water infrastructure resources is vital to the safety, environmental protection and economic development of state and local economies.

The National Governors Association has released Governors’ Recommendations for Reauthorizing the Water Resources Development Act. Coordination with the states and localities where projects are located should be a hallmark of federal water resources policy. Governors urge Congress to pass WRDA legislation that encourages regular communication with governors and modern water resources development strategies that align available resources with infrastructure needs.

Authorization of U.S. Army Corps of Engineers activities can provide a reliable foundation for mitigating the impacts of future weather events and facilitating sound water infrastructure development. Therefore, we are encouraging passage of a WRDA that authorizes qualified projects and implements mechanisms that strengthen federal-state coordination in managing our vital water infrastructure resources.

Such policies support commerce and environmental protection and create a positive atmosphere that fosters economic growth. We strongly urge you to reauthorize WRDA and look forward to working with you to refine this vital legislation.

Sincerely,

Governor Dennis Daugaard
Chair
Natural Resources Committee

Governor Edmund G. Brown Jr.
Vice Chair
Natural Resources Committee