Congressman Sanford Bishop

Representing the 2nd District of Georgia


Apr 20, 2016
Press Release

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Congressman Sanford D. Bishop, Jr. (GA-02), Member of the House Appropriations Committee, released the following statement after the full Appropriations Committee approved its Fiscal Year (FY) 2017 Energy and Water Appropriations Bill. The government spending bill now goes to the floor of the U.S. House of Representatives for its consideration.

“Provisions in the Energy & Water government funding bill will bolster job creation and strengthen Georgia’s economy. The bill invests $65 million in the Savannah Harbor, develops waterway infrastructure across our state, and reinforces industries dependant on imports and exports as well as funds energy research, nuclear security, and the Army Corps of Engineers,” said Congressman Sanford Bishop.

"We are very grateful for the commitment of the Georgia delegation and their colleagues on the Appropriations committee to see ports properly funded. The commitment to the Savannah Harbor Expansion Project (SHEP) as a priority of the Congress is clear and the increased funding for energy and water programs overall provides the Corps of Engineers with the capability of fully funding SHEP construction for fiscal year 2017. This project is critical to national trade and economic growth for generations to come,” said Jim Walters, Chairman of the Georgia Ports Authority.

A summary of the subcommittee draft of the fiscal year 2017 Energy and Water Appropriations bill follows:



Georgia Projects:

Investigations (potential new projects)

Proctor Creek                                                                                    $200,000

Savannah River Below Augusta Ecosystem Restoration  500,000

Sweetwater Creek                                                                          500,000


Richard B. Russell Dam and Lake                                                930,000

Savannah Harbor Expansion                                                        42,700,000


Allatoona Lake                                                                                  7,925,000

Apalachicola, Chattahoochee and Flint Rivers                      1,026,000

Atlantic Intercostal Waterway                                                    181,000

Brunswick Harbor                                                                            4,528,000

Buford Dam/Lake Lanier                                                               9,823,000

Carters Dam/Lake                                                                            7,724,000

Hartwell Lake                                                                                     11,343,000

Inspection of completed works                                                 227,000

Strom Thurmond Lake                                                                   18,399

Project condition surveys                                                             128,000                                                

Richard Russell Dam/Lake                                                            7,842,000

Savannah Harbor                                                                             23,527,000

Savannah River below Augusta                                                  137,000

West Point Dam and Lake                                                            8,450,000

The bill totals $37.4 billion – $259 million above the fiscal year 2016 enacted level and $168 million above the President’s budget request.

Nuclear Security: The bill provides a total of $12.9 billion for DOE’s nuclear weapons security programs, including Weapons Activities, Defense Nuclear Nonproliferation, and Naval Reactors – a $327 million increase above the fiscal year 2016 level. This includes:

  • $9.3 billion for Weapons Activities – $438 million above the fiscal year 2016 enacted level;
  • $1.4 billion for Naval Nuclear Reactors – $45 million above the fiscal year 2016 enacted level; and
  • $1.8 billion for Defense Nuclear Nonproliferation – $118 million below the fiscal year 2016 enacted level. This includes $340 million in funding to help fulfill the international commitment by the U.S. to operate a Mixed Oxide (MOX) Fuel Fabrication Facility to dispose of surplus plutonium.

Army Corps of Engineers: The bill provides $6.1 billion, an increase of $100 million above the fiscal year 2016 enacted level and $1.5 billion above the President’s budget request. Specifically, the bill provides:

  • $2.7 billion for navigation projects and studies, including $1.263 billion in funding from the Harbor Maintenance Trust Fund and full use of estimated annual revenues from the Inland Waterways Trust Fund;
  • $1.8 billion to support public health and safety by funding flood and storm damage reduction activities, an increase of $105 million above fiscal year 2016 and $582 million above the budget request.

Environmental Cleanup: The bill provides $6.15 billion for environmental management activities, $66 million below the fiscal year 2016 enacted level. This includes $5.2 billion for Defense Environmental Cleanup to clean sites contaminated by previous nuclear weapons production.

Energy Programs: The bill provides DOE $11.08 billion – an increase of $56 million above the fiscal year 2016 enacted level and $1.3 billion below the President's request. Within this total, $645 million (+$13m) is provided for research and development. In addition, nuclear energy research, development, and demonstration activities are increased by $25 million above the fiscal year 2016 enacted level, for a total funding level of $1.01 billion. Renewable energy programs are funded at $1.07 billion, slightly below the President’s budget request.

Science Research: The bill includes $5.4 billion for science research – an increase of $50 million above the fiscal year 2016 enacted level.

Bureau of Reclamation: The bill provides $1.1 billion – $131 million below the fiscal year 2016 enacted level and $27 million above the President’s request – for the Department of the Interior and the Bureau of Reclamation to help manage, develop, and protect the water resources of Western states.

Yucca Mountain: The bill continues congressional efforts to support the Yucca Mountain nuclear repository, providing $150 million for the Nuclear Waste Disposal program and $20 million for the Nuclear Regulatory Commission to continue the adjudication of DOE’s Yucca Mountain License application.

Additional Provisions:

  • The bill prohibits any changes to federal jurisdiction under the Clean Water Act.
  • The bill prohibits any changes to the definition of “fill material” and “discharge of fill material” for the purposes of the Clean Water Act.
  • The bill restricts the application of the Clean Water Act in certain agricultural areas, including farm ponds and irrigation ditches.
  • The bill includes language allowing the possession of firearms on Corps of Engineers lands.
  • The bill prohibits new nuclear nonproliferation projects in Russia.

For the complete text of the subcommittee draft of the FY 2017 Energy and Water Appropriations bill, please click here.