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House Bill Would Streamline Construction of New Dams and Reservoirs

House Republicans from Washington are hoping to cut red tape for the development of surface storage facilities as the American West grapples with intensifying droughts.
December 6, 2017, 8am PST | James Brasuell | @CasualBrasuell
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Washington Water Storage
Suzanna Pratt

Legislation under consideration recently [pdf] by the House of Representative's Subcommittee on Water, Power and Oceans "would streamline the review process for water projects, including additional surface water storage, infrastructure and recycling," reports Cassandra Profita.

The bill, titled the Bureau of Reclamation and Bureau of Indian Affairs Water Project Streamlining Act (H.R. 4419), is authored by two Washington Republicans, Rep. Dan Newhouse and Rep. David Reichart. Not all members of the subcommittee expressed support for the idea of streamlining water projects. "Rep. Jared Huffman, D-Calif., said the bill 'attempts to undermine our nation’s bedrock environmental laws.'"

Profita notes that the legislation would be a specific benefit to the Yakima River Basin Water Enhancement Project in central Washington, as well as projects in Kansas, Montana and California.

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Published on Tuesday, December 5, 2017 in Crosscut
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