FIMP Plan Achieves Critical, Major Milestone With House Passage This Afternoon
WASHINGTON - Today, Congressman Lee Zeldin (R, NY-1) made the following remarks on the House floor ahead of House passage of the Water Resources Development Act of 2020 (H.R. 7575), which provides authority for the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers to carry out water resources development projects and studies, as well as reforms and policy direction to the Army Corps for implementation of its civil works missions:
“I have the honor of representing the First Congressional District of New York located on the East End of Long Island. It’s a district almost completely surrounded by water.
“We were hit really hard by SuperStorm Sandy, and the wide-spread devastation emphasized the dire need to ensure our communities were better prepared for the future.
“Working hard with my colleagues on both sides of the aisle, Colonel Thomas Asbery of the Army Corps and their entire hard working team, this bill prioritizes local projects that are vital to my Congressional District:
“That includes the Fire Island to Montauk Point Project, which includes essential dredging and shoreline projects for over 83 miles of coastline.
“Coastal Storm Risk Management for Hashamomuck Cove in Southold is included, where right now local residents, businesses and first responders are paralyzed during even a severe thunderstorm.
“Equally as important, this legislation continues to build on these victories, jumpstarting movement on projects at Reel Point Preserve in Shelter Island, Goldsmith Inlet in Southold and Wading River Creek in Riverhead through authorizing feasibility studies.
“The Water Resources Development Act is great news for our shorelines on Long Island and across the country, and I urge my colleagues to support this legislation.”
The Water Resources Development Act of 2020 provides authorization for construction of the:
Fire Island to Montauk Point Project, which includes essential dredging and shoreline projects spanning 83 miles of coastline, 80% of which is in the First Congressional District. The massive FIMP project, with an initial construction cost currently estimated at $1.5 billion, includes a variety of coastal and wetland restoration projects that will use the natural environment to reduce flooding, erosion, and storm damage, while also preserving the natural environment and habitat for wildlife and provides various coastal management initiatives for the bay side of the barrier beaches.
Federal funding was previously appropriated for completion of the reformulation study and initial construction at 100% federal cost. Additional federal funding will be provided as needed.
Hashamomuck Cove Coastal Storm Risk Management Project in Southold, which will help reduce coastal storm damage to residents who live along the Long Island Sound. The project is expected to play a key role in protecting County Road 48 - a major transportation route used for hurricane evacuation, while also protecting critical infrastructure including nursing homes and hospitals.
The initial federal funding contribution estimate of $11,549,000 for this project is now eligible for funding by the Army Corps of Engineers as part of its upcoming annual work plan. This project also requires an initial contribution of $6,218,000 from a non-federal sponsor.
Additionally, it authorizes feasibility studies for
Wading River Creek in Riverhead, which will focus on hurricane and storm damage risk reduction, flood risk management, navigation, and ecosystem restoration;
Reel Point Preserve on Shelter Island, which will focus on navigation and shoreline stabilization; and
Goldsmith Inlet in Southold, which will focus on improving navigation.