February 13, 2020
U.S. Senators Chris Van Hollen and Ben Cardin (both D-Md.) lauded the release today of the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (Army Corps) FY2020 work plan that increases available funding for regional projects by more than $18 million. The Army Corps plan boosts resources for oyster restoration and Chesapeake Bay ecosystems and ensures the continued safety and efficiency of the Port of Baltimore and its shipping channels.
“From protecting Maryland’s oyster population, to revitalizing the
Poplar and Mid-Bay islands, to increasing business at the Port of
Baltimore these Army Corps projects are critical to Maryland’s economic
and environmental health. I was proud to work alongside Team Maryland to
fight for these important investments. Together, we will continue
working to provide the resources necessary for our state and local
economies to grow and thrive,” said Senator Van Hollen.
“The latest Army Corps work plan shows an ongoing commitment to major Maryland projects. I thank the Army Corps for renewing investments in such critical efforts as restoring habitats for the Chesapeake Bay’s dwindling oyster population, Poplar Island Ecosystem and Mid-Chesapeake Bay (James and Barren) Island. These projects have been paying dividends and helping our environment,” said Senator Cardin. “The expertise and investments being made by the Army Corps benefit Maryland and the entire region. The Maryland delegation will continue to pursue funding for additional projects that are high priorities for our local communities.”
Among the projects in Maryland receiving additional funding from the Army Corps FY2020 Work Plan are:
· NEW – $5 million for habitat restoration for oysters in the Tred Avon River. Scientific monitoring of earlier oyster habitat restoration in the Tred Avon and at other sanctuaries in the Chesapeake Bay have illustrated clearly that these types of restoration projects are working. These projects likely represent our best hope of reinvigorating the Chesapeake’s oyster populations, while improving the Bay’s water quality and providing habitat and forage grounds for species like the striped bass and blue crab. Brings total FY20 funding to $25,350,000.
· NEW – $1.5 million for exploring further deepening or widening of the Seagirt Loop Channels, a project that has the potential to allow the Port of Baltimore to better accommodate larger vessels coming through the Panama Canal.
· NEW – $1,935,000 to initiate and complete preconstruction, engineering and design phase for the Anacostia Watershed Restoration project in Prince George’s County. The estimated total cost of the project is $34.1 million, to be cost shared between Baltimore District and Prince George’s County Department of the Environment. Multiple sites will restore 7 miles of in-stream habitat, opening 4 miles for fish passage and connecting 14 miles of stream to previously restored stream reaches.
NEW – $2,750,000 for W.R. Grace at Curtis Bay – Project to carry out radioactive waste remediation, funded by the Formerly Utilized Sites Remedial Action Program (FUSRAP).
· $500,000 additional funds for completing preconstruction engineering and design for Mid-Chesapeake Bay Island Restoration (James and Barren Islands)
· $4,950,000 new funding for dredging and other activities related to the Port of Baltimore, bringing total FY20 funding to $25,350,000
· $22,255,000 for Intracoastal Waterway, Delaware River to Chesapeake Bay, DE & MD
· $17,300,000 for Poplar Island, MD
· $4,382,000 for Jennings Randolph Lake, MD & WV
· $4,025,000 for Wicomico River, MD
· $3,238,000 for Youghiogheny River Lake, PA & MD
· $565,000 for Baltimore Harbor Drift Removal
· $500,000 for Ocean City Harbor and Inlet and Sinepuxent Bay
· $214,000 for Cumberland, MD and Ridgeley, WV
· $600,000 for Assateague Island restoration
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