Congressmen Cleaver, Graves Announce Passage of a Water Infrastructure Bill
(Washington, D.C.) – Today, the U.S. House of Representatives passed the 2016 Water Resources Development Act bill, S.612, the Water Infrastructure Improvements for the Nation (WIIN) Act. This bill authorizes water resources development projects to be carried out by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers and also authorizes funding to address the Flint water crisis.
Several flood protection projects in the Kansas City area are included in the final House bill. In a successful bi-partisan effort, Missouri Congressmen Emanuel Cleaver, II (D-05) and Sam Graves (R- 06) advocated for the inclusion of these Kansas City projects in WRDA, which authorizes flood control and other water infrastructure projects conducted by the Army Corps of Engineers.
“I am pleased to see the passage of the 2016 WRDA bill, S.612. This bill contains several flood control projects that are imperative for Kansas City area. I’m pleased that Congressman Graves and I were able to work together to advocate for these improvements that will help protect families and businesses against the devastation of floods,” said Congressman Cleaver.
“Proper maintenance of the Missouri River affects everyone and everything in the Kansas City area,” Rep. Graves said. “Over the past year, Congressman Cleaver and I have worked to highlight the importance of levee systems that protect thousands of homes and millions of dollars in economic activity across our region. I am pleased to see those projects prioritized here, ensuring KC has the best possible defense against floods that could threaten lives and devastate local business.” Congressman Graves continued.
The target areas in Kansas City that would receive significant improvements are;
- Turkey Creek Basin Flood Project – Increased authorization to $156.1 million for the final phases would widen the channel, relocate bridges, and include tunnel modifications to finish the project. Turkey Creek flows 15 miles through the Kansas City metro, and its frequent flooding poses serious risks to loss of life and residential and commercial areas.
- Blue River Basin Project in the Dodson Industrial District – Increased authorization to $48.4 million for the final phase would complete this project and would include a 6,800 foot levee floodwall along the north bank of the Blue River, protecting over $380 million in property investment and the 1,500 people who work in the area.
- Armourdale and Central Industrial District Levees –Authorization of $328.1 million to start construction of Phase II of the project. These levees cover 60 miles along the Missouri and Kansas Rivers, providing critical flood project to the economic heart of Kansas City. The project protects over 5,000 structures totaling over $20 billion in investments, plus serving as home to 24,000 people.
- Swope Park Industrial Area – Increased authorization to $32.4 million to complete the project. Swope Park Industrial Area is a 50-acre business park with multiple companies and over 400 employees. The site sits along the Blue River, and only one access road exists into the park. The project will provide flooding relief and create a permanent safe passage for workers in and out of the industrial area.
For more information, please contact Heather Frierson at 816-842-4545 or Heather.Frierson@mail.house.gov.
Emanuel Cleaver, II is the U.S. Representative for Missouri’s Fifth Congressional District, which includes Kansas City, Independence, Lee's Summit, Raytown, Grandview, Sugar Creek, Blue Springs, Grain Valley, Oak Grove, North Kansas City, Gladstone, Claycomo, and all of Ray, Lafayette, and Saline Counties. He is a member of the exclusive House Financial Services Committee, the Ranking Member of the Subcommittee on Housing and Insurance, and also a Senior Whip of the Democratic Caucus. A high-resolution photo of Congressman Cleaver is available here.