The 2016 Water Resources and Development Act (WRDA) may face an uphill climb during the lame-duck session of Congress as the House and Senate versions of the bill differ greatly. House and Senate staff members met this week to hash out differences between the two bills, but lawmakers are conflicted on whether or not a bill can pass. Politico reports Peter DeFazio of Massachusetts, the top Democrat on the House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee, gave a final bill long odds, saying, “I don’t think there’s going to be much legislating done in the next few weeks.” DeFazio opposed the House-passed version of the bill earlier this year after a provision to increase spending from the industry-funded Harbor Maintenance Trust Fund was dropped. Meanwhile, Senate Environment and Public Works Committee Chairman Jim Inhofe of Oklahoma reiterated that the Senate’s $220 million package for Flint, Michigan and other communities would have to be included for the deal to clear the Senate. Inhofe said he was still “optimistic there will be a deal” during the lame-duck session.
From the National Association of Farm Broadcasting news service.