By Eugene Pawlik, U.S. Army Corps of Engineers HeadquartersFebruary 13, 2012
Washington -- The President's Budget for fiscal year 2013 (FY13) includes $4.731 billion in discretionary funding for the Civil Works program of the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE).
The Honorable Jo-Ellen Darcy, Assistant Secretary of the Army for Civil Works, said, "The fiscal 2013 Civil Works budget for the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers reflects the Administration's priorities through targeted investments in the nation's infrastructure that fund the development, management, restoration, and protection of the Nation's water, wetlands, and related resources. The Budget also reflects the tough choices necessary to put the country on a fiscally sustainable path.
"This is a performance-based budget that funds the construction of projects that reduce risk to public safety, provide significant environmental restoration benefits, or provide significant economic returns on the nation's investment. America is a maritime nation, and this budget invests in navigation improvements that enable efficient use of waterborne transportation, a key component in global trade," said Darcy. "The 2013 Civil Works program is a continuing, fiscally prudent investment in the nation's water resources infrastructure and in the restoration of its aquatic ecosystems."
The Army Civil Works budget funds the planning, design, construction, operation and maintenance of projects, and focuses on the highest performing projects and programs within three main Civil Works mission areas: commercial navigation, flood risk management, and aquatic ecosystem restoration. It also funds programs that contribute to the protection of the nation's waters and wetlands; the generation of low-cost renewable hydropower; the restoration of certain sites contaminated as a result of the nation's early atomic weapons development program; and emergency preparedness and training to respond to natural disasters.
New federal funding in the Civil Works budget consists of $3.744 billion from the general fund, $848 million from the Harbor Maintenance Trust Fund, $95 million from the Inland Waterways Trust Fund, and $44 million from Special Recreation User Fees.
The FY13 funding will be distributed among the appropriation accounts as follows:
$2.398 billion for Operation and Maintenance
$1.471 billion for Construction
$234 million for Mississippi River and Tributaries
$205 million for the Regulatory Program
$182 million for Expenses
$104 million for the Formerly Utilized Sites Remedial Action Program
$102 million for Investigations
$30 million for Flood Control and Coastal Emergencies
$5 million for the Office of the Assistant Secretary of the Army for Civil Works
The FY13 Civil Works program is also provided $552 million in funding from three additional sources bringing the FY13 total program funding to $5.283 billion. This includes approximately $450 million in cost-sharing contributions from non-federal partners. Additionally, $21 million in Federal Permanent Appropriations will be available to USACE in FY13, and $81 million will be available from the Coastal Wetlands Restoration Trust Fund for the work of several of the Federal agencies including USACE, overseen by an interagency Federal-State task force led by USACE.
The FY13 Budget supports the modernization of Federal water resources infrastructure processes to address 21st Century water resources needs through policies and procedures that govern Federal water resources development and strategies for both managing the Nation's aging infrastructure and restoring aquatic ecosystem functions affected by past investments. The Administration is considering additional proposals to advance efforts already underway and to build the foundation of a comprehensive strategy for investing in the Nation's water infrastructure. In considering and developing these new policies, procedures, and strategies, the Administration will continue to engage and collaborate with the many stakeholders whose interests are tied to our Nation's water infrastructure, including State, local, and Tribal governments, as well as the Congress.
The FY13 Budget includes $1.747 billion for the study, design, construction, operation and maintenance of inland and coastal navigation projects. It funds capital investments on the inland waterways based on the estimated revenues to the Inland Waterways Trust Fund, while proposing a new user fee to increase revenue to this trust fund to enable a significant increase in funding for such investments in the future.
The FY13 O&M program is funded at $2.532 billion, including $134 million in the Mississippi River and Tributaries (MR&T) account. The Budget emphasizes performance of existing projects by focusing on the those coastal harbors and inland waterways with the most commercial traffic as well as safety improvements at Federal dams and levees based on the risk and consequence of a failure. The Budget also funds maintenance work at harbors that support significant commercial fishing, subsistence, or public transportation benefits.
The FY13 construction program is funded at $1.570 billion, including $99 million in the MR&T account. The construction program uses objective, performance-based guidelines to allocate funding toward the highest performing economic, environmental, and public safety investments. The aquatic ecosystem restoration program, whose priorities are informed by interagency collaboration and planning, emphasizes funding to restore several large ecosystems: the California Bay Delta, Chesapeake Bay, the Everglades, the Great Lakes, and the Gulf Coast. USACE will continue to work with other federal, state and local agencies, using the best available science and adaptive management, to protect and restore these ecosystems. Environmental sustainability of these ecosystems also helps to support positive economic growth in the surrounding communities.
The Budget funds 101 construction projects, consisting of 11 dam safety assurance, seepage control, and static instability correction projects; 24 projects ranked on the basis of life-saving benefits (including three completions); four additional project completions; three new starts; and 59 other continuing projects.
By program area, the 101 funded construction projects consist of 57 Flood and Coastal Storm Damage Reduction projects (including one new start and five budgeted for completion), 23 Commercial Navigation projects (including 11 continuing mitigation items and six dredged material placement areas, two budgeted for completion), 19 Aquatic Ecosystem Restoration projects (including four projects to meet requirements of Biological Opinions and two new starts), and mitigation associated with two Hydropower projects (one budgeted for completion).
Among the ongoing construction projects in the FY13 Budget, the highest funded projects are: Herbert Hoover Dike, FL, seepage control ($153 million); the South Florida ecosystem restoration program, which includes the Everglades ($153 million); Olmsted Locks and Dam, IL & KY ($144 million); Columbia River Fish Mitigation, WA, OR & ID ($98 million); Missouri River Fish and Wildlife Recovery, IA, KS, MO, MT, NE, ND & SD ($90 million); American River Watershed (Folsom Dam Mod), CA ($87 million); Wolf Creek Dam, Lake Cumberland, KY, seepage control ($85 million); Center Hill Lake, TN ($75 million); and New York and New Jersey Harbor, NY & NJ ($68 million).
The eight construction projects funded for completion in the FY13 Budget are: Columbia River Treaty Fishing Access Sites, OR& WA; Jacksonville Harbor DMDF, FL; Lock and Dam 27, Mississippi River, IL; Portugues and Bucana Rivers, PR; Sims Bayou, Houston, TX; St. Louis Flood Protection, MO; SW Valley Flood Damage Reduction, Albuquerque, NM; and Wolf Creek Dam, Lake Cumberland, KY.
The FY13 construction program includes three high-priority new construction starts: Hamilton City, CA ($7.5 million); Louisiana Coastal Area, Ecosystem Restoration, LA ($16.8 million); and Lower Colorado River Basin (Wharton/Onion), TX ($2 million).
The FY13 Budget includes funding for the initial construction of projects to reduce storm damage along the coast and the periodic renourishment of such projects. The FY13 program supports nine such projects of which two are initial construction and seven are periodic renourishment.
Recreation is funded at $252 million in FY13, with $241 million in the O&M account and $11 million in the MR&T account. USACE is the nation's largest provider of federal recreation opportunities, and its recreation areas contribute to the success of the America's Great Outdoors Initiative.
The FY13 Regulatory Program is funded at $205 million. With these funds, USACE will improve protection of the nation's waters and wetlands and provide greater efficiency of permit processing.
The FY13 FUSRAP program is funded at $104 million to continue remedial activities at 22 sites contaminated as a result of the Nation's early atomic weapons development program.
The FY13 Investigations account is funded at $102 million to fund studies to determine the need, engineering feasibility, and economic, environmental and social return of potential solutions for water- and land-related resource problems. The Budget will fund the completion of 18 studies and includes six new studies: Cano Martin Pena, PR; the Chesapeake Bay Comprehensive Study, DE, MD, PA, VA; Englebright and Daguerre-Point Dams (Yuba River) Fish Passage, CA; Houston Ship Channel, TX; the Louisiana Coastal Area Comprehensive Study; and the nationwide Water Resources Priorities Study, a high-priority evaluation of the nation's vulnerability to inland and coastal flooding and of the effectiveness, efficiency, and accountability of existing programs and strategies.
Emergency Management is funded at $36 million in FY13, with $30 million in the FCCE account for preparedness and training to respond to floods, hurricanes, and other natural disasters, and $6 million in the O&M account. The FCCE funding includes $2.5 million to support continued USACE participation in the development of Silver Jackets interagency teams in every state to provide unified federal assistance in implementing flood risk management solutions.
USACE will also participate with other land management agencies in the Veterans Job Corps program to put veterans to work on conservation and restoration of natural resources, recreation, and related infrastructure on federal, state, Tribal and local public lands. The $1 billion program is proposed over five years through the Department of Veterans Affairs, which will coordinate the effort.
The FY13 Civil Works budget press book will be available on the Web at 1:30 p.m. eastern, February 13, at http://www.usace.army.mil/Missions/CivilWorks/Budget.aspx, under the heading Program Budget: Press Books.