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Pres. Obama signs Water Resources Development Act into law

The Water Resources Development Act (WRDA) – also known as the Water Infrastructure Improvements for the Nation Act – officially became law Dec. 16.

Pres. Barack Obama signed the WRDA/WIIN Act into law, authorizing nationwide efforts to improve waterways, restore watersheds and provide cleaner drinking water.

The new law will help provide funding for infrastructure projects at local channels and harbors.

“In the long-term, it invests in a number of water projects to promote water storage and supply, flood control, desalination, and water recycling,” Obama said in a released statement. “These projects will help assure that California is more resilient in the face of growing water demands and drought-based uncertainty.”

The WRDA and WIIN Act, in addition to financially supporting infrastructure projects, would also provide $170 million to communities with drinking water emergencies similar to one experienced in Flint, Michigan.

“The Water Resources Development Act fulfills Congress’ commitment to support and improve America’s water resources infrastructure, which is critical to our Nation’s economic competitiveness and domestic security,” a House Transportation Committee statement read. “WRDA invests in America to ensure that we are prepared for this growth and that the United States can compete globally with a 21st century infrastructure.”

Obama said California would be one of the biggest beneficiaries of the WRDA/WIIN Act.

“Building on the work of previous administrations, my administration has worked closely with the State of California and other affected parties to address the critical elements of California’s complex water challenges by accommodating the needs and concerns of California water users and the important species that depend on that same water,” Obama stated.

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