WASHINGTON, D.C. – U.S. Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell praised Senate passage today of an energy security and water infrastructure bill which is important to Kentucky and to America. The measure provides critical resources that Senator McConnell helped secure for several Kentucky energy, water infrastructure, and economic development programs, including:
$206 million specifically for cleanup operations at the Paducah Department of Energy site, which will help employees at the McCracken County facility continue their important work. The facility will also receive additional funding in the bill for other operations at the site.
$225 million specifically for the Olmsted Lock and Dam project in Ballard County. This and additional U.S. Army Corps of Engineers funding in the bill will support construction and maintenance of inland waterways infrastructure that is vital to barge and maritime jobs in Kentucky.
$151 million for the Appalachian Regional Commission (ARC), including $50 million specifically for coal communities and $6 million for water infrastructure projects in distressed counties in Central Appalachia.
$25 million for the Delta Regional Authority—which includes a number of Western Kentucky counties—to support economic development, infrastructure, training and other projects in the Mississippi Delta Region.
“The Energy and Water Appropriations bill is important for American energy, for American waterways and ports, and for American commerce and safety,” Senator McConnell said. “Kentuckians would benefit from initiatives for the Appalachian Regional Commission to assist coal communities in Appalachia, from vital cleanup work in Paducah, and from construction of the Olmsted Lock and Dam and other vital inland waterway projects. This is a good bill for Kentuckians and for our country. By returning to regular order, we’ve opened up the process and empowered all Senators to have more of a say in the appropriations process. The progress we’ve seen already is encouraging. It shows what’s possible when the Senate under a new majority gets back to a productive legislative process.”
This is the earliest date since creation of the Budget Act in 1974 that an individual appropriations bill has been approved by the full Senate. The legislation must now be approved by the House of Representatives.