House Adopts Rooney Funding for Herbert Hoover Dike, Florida Waterways
Washington, D.C. – Congressman Tom Rooney (FL-17), a senior member on the House Appropriations Committee, successfully secured critical funding for key Florida water infrastructure projects with the House’s passage of the 2019 Energy and Water Appropriations Bill today.
“Waterways connect Floridians and are a vital part of our state’s ecosystem,” Rooney said. “This bill ensures we are doing all we can to keep our waterways clean, safe and beautiful. This legislation also funds construction for the Herbert Hoover Dike, which protects all of South Florida’s communities from catastrophic flooding. On top of my request for $96 million to continue rehabilitation of the dike, this bill also includes over $100 million for the dam safety program. The Army Corps can use these combined funds – along with the $10 billion provided in last year’s disaster relief package – to fast-track completion of the dike by 2022. Repairing the dike certainly hasn’t been an easy task, but I am confident this funding will make a real difference in restoration efforts. This funding will make a real difference to the people of Florida. I look forward to working with my colleagues in the Senate to make sure this important bill reaches the President’s desk and is signed into law.”
The 2019 Energy and Water Appropriations Bill also includes $67.5 million for South Florida Ecosystem Restoration and $50 million in additional funding for environmental restoration projects.
Funding Rooney helped secure in the 2019 Energy and Water Appropriations Bill will:
- Fund Everglades Restoration and the Herbert Hoover Dike – In keeping with the rules of the earmark ban, Rooney requested the Committee support the president’s budget request level for Everglades restoration and the Herbert Hoover Dike construction. The Herbert Hoover Dike received $96 million and another $67.5 million was provided to support the Comprehensive Everglades Restoration Plan (CERP) and non-CERP projects like the Kissimmee River Restoration project.
- Fund operations and maintenance in central and southern Florida – Provides $15.463 million for flood relief and water conservation projects throughout the Everglades and southeast Florida.
- Fund the Okeechobee Waterway, FL – Provides $2.32 million for the waterway which runs through Lake Okeechobee and consists of the Caloosahatchee River on the west side of the lake and the St. Lucie Canal on the east side.
- Fund shore and coastline protection – Provides $60 million for shoreline restoration efforts which are critical to Florida's coastal communities.
- Support the Second Amendment – Permanently bars the Corps from issuing any rule that would prohibit law-abiding citizens from carrying firearms at project sites.
- Repeal the Obama Administration’s misguided Waters of the U.S. Rule, which gave the Environmental Protection Agency the unprecedented authority to regulate bodies of water on private property, including ditches and farm ponds.
Rooney has worked tirelessly to fund the Herbert Hoover Dike, which is at the heart of the Kissimmee-Okeechobee-Everglades water system. In addition to securing funding in annual Appropriations bills, he has introduced legislation to allow Members of Congress to directly fund Army Corps projects and has pitched an idea to give Congress greater control over water projects through a change to House rules.
The Senate will next consider its version of the Energy and Water Appropriations bill. Rooney will work with fellow House members as well as our Florida Senators to ensure these projects are included in the finalmeasure.