Monday, July 23, 2012

On-Again, Off-Again Levee Construction Bill Back On (UPDATED: See Comment)

The U.S. House is scheduled to vote today (Monday, July 20) on a bill introduced by Sen. John Hoeven (R-ND) that would direct the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) to rebuild permanent levees on North Dakota lands acquired under a federal program for reclaiming floodplains (FEMA's Hazard Mitigation Grant Program). The bill (S 2039) was originally scheduled for a floor vote last Tuesday. However, that vote was cancelled, likely indicating the measure did not have the votes to pass. The bill certainly was not without its controversiy and detractors. Earlier in that week, American Rivers, the Association of State Floodplain Managers and the conservative "R Street Institute" had come out as opposing the levee carve-out bill.

The bill now being considered in the House was passed by unanimous consent in the Senate in January, and would create what Hoeven has called a "pilot project" in his home state, allowing a State or local government to "construct levees on certain properties otherwise designated as open space lands," and lifting a ban on federal levee construction on lands purchased under.


  1. The Monday House vote to suspend the rules and pass the levee bill failed by 127 votes. Vote details here:

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