Rep. Ed Whitfield & Co-Sponsors Introduce WAVE4 Inland Waterways Infrastructure Investment Bill
Waterways Council, Inc. Applauds Move
Waterways Council, Inc. (WCI) applauds Congressman Ed Whitfield of Kentucky (R-KY), along with co-sponsors Rep. Jerry Costello (D-IL), Rep. John Duncan (R-TN), Rep. Tim Johnson (R-IL), Rep. Robert Alderholt (R-AL), Rep. Terri Sewell (D-AL) and Rep. Russ Carnahan (D-MO) for their vision and leadership in introducing a bill (H.R. 4342) to modernize the lock and dam infrastructure on the inland waterways system. Known as “Waterways are Vital for the Economy, Energy, Efficiency, and Environment Act of 2012” — or WAVE4, this legislation incorporates the elements of the Inland Waterways Capital Development Plan. The bill will address the critical needs of the inland waterways system, create American jobs, enable growth in U.S. exports, and continue to fuel multiple economic benefits that our waterways generate.
The Capital Development Plan applies objective criteria to prioritize essential construction and major rehabilitation projects, revises current beneficiaries’ cost-sharing for these projects, reforms the Corps of Engineers’ internal project delivery process, and suggests a revenue enhancement – a 30 to 45% increase in the existing diesel fuel user fee the navigation industry pays – to fund vital infrastructure investments that return so much to the American economy and to consumers.
“We thank Congressmen Whitfield, Costello, Duncan, Johnson, Alderholt, Sewell and Carnahan for their strong leadership in addressing the critical needs of the inland waterways system. The present business model for modernizing our lock and dam infrastructure is broken, with too few lock and dam projects being built on time and on budget. Recognizing the failings in the current system, this WAVE4 legislation will modernize our essential inland navigation infrastructure and in so doing will benefit the U.S. agricultural sector, our construction industry, our energy sector, our environment, our economy, and all the beneficiaries of the waterways system,” said WCI President/CEO Michael J. Toohey.