Republican Congressman Rodney Davis says he is thrilled with a bill that covers improvements on the nation's rivers. Davis is particularly happy with regulatory simplification he believes could save Billions in taxpayer dollars. The legislation will require that all studies on projects be done within three years and within three million dollars in costs. He says currently studies can take 15 years and billions of dollars to complete.
Before, there was no cap. The Republican, who represents part of Bloomington-Normal, says the measure deauthorizes $18 billion in old projects the Corps of Engineers never worked on.
Davis says he's also pleased with the creation of a new way to approve infrastructure projects such as port facilities that would allow public private partnerships to split the costs
to move forward with port facilities, levy repairs, and other projects.
Working out the differences in the House and Senate versions of the bill took six months. But, Davis says this was far easier than the farm bill conference committee on which he also served. Davis says the farm bill had far more partisan fights than the water resources bill, which had relatively few sticking points that were largely about House and Senate turf.
The measure that came out of a Conference Committee has overwhelmingly passed the U.S. House. The measure had been in the conference committee since November. The Water Resources Bill reauthorization traditionally gathers support by including projects for many Congressional Districts. Davis says the relatively easy House passage does not support an argument to return to the era of earmarks.
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