February 10, 2016
Rep. Walter B. Jones, R-N.C., yesterday announced that he has secured
an additional $3,225,000 from the Army Corps of Engineers to dredge
Oregon Inlet and an additional $1 million for Hatteras Inlet.
Jones secures additional funds for Oregon and Hatteras inlets
Last month Congressman Jones sent a letter to Army Corps leadership
reminding them of the chronically poor navigation conditions at both
inlets. He also pointed out that the amounts provided in the
President’s fiscal year 2016 budget request – $2 million for Oregon
Inlet and $300,000 for Hatteras Inlet – are insufficient to keep the
channels maintained at anything close to their authorized depths.
In fact, Jones said, without supplemental funds, both channels may be
in danger of closing to vessel traffic during the year.
While Congress no longer has the ability to legislatively increase
funding for specific projects because of an earmark ban imposed in
2011, Congress did attempt to address some of the waterway maintenance
issues across the nation in the recently-passed fiscal year 2016
appropriations bill for the Corps.
In that bill, Congress created several unallocated pots of money for
different project categories and gave the Corps discretion in
determining which projects to fund from these pots. In his letter
to the Corps, Congressman Jones argued that Oregon and Hatteras Inlets
are the type of projects Congress had in mind when it provided the
Corps with these additional resources.
Yesterday, it was announced that the Army Corps has granted Congressman
Jones’ request. An additional $3,225,000 will be allocated to
Oregon Inlet, bringing total FY 16 federal funding for that project to
$5,225,000. An additional $1 million will be allocated to
Hatteras Inlet, bringing total FY16 federal funding for that project to
“Oregon and Hatteras Inlets are vital to the economic success of
Eastern North Carolina, which is why I am very pleased to announce that
the Army Corps of Engineers has accepted my request for additional
money to dredge them,” said Congressman Jones. “These inlets must
be safe and passable for fishermen, boaters and the Coast Guard.
I will continue to do everything I can to fight for that cause.”
Jones also said yesterday that letters he has written have helped
secure an additional $5 million for dredging the Morehead City harbor
and $500,000 to dredge Little River Inlet.