Berry Helps Secure Funding For Energy and Water Projects

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Today, Congressman Marion Berry (AR-01) voted in the House of Representatives to pass an annual spending bill containing millions of dollars in funding for numerous energy and water projects requested on behalf of the First District of Arkansas.  The bill passed the House by a vote of 308 to 114 and will be sent to the Senate for consideration.

Congressman Berry has been a member of the House Appropriations Committee since 2003 and currently serves on the Subcommittee on Energy and Water Development. Berry has been working with fellow appropriators for months to ensure Arkansas’s energy and water needs received the funding needed to continue to provide economic development for the region.

“The passage of this bill in the House means we are one step closer to securing millions of dollars for water irrigation, flood prevention, and conservation and construction projects throughout our state,” said Berry.  “Investments in rural water infrastructure and energy research will enhance our ability for additional economic development opportunities. These projects will make a significant positive impact I’m proud to have helped secure them for our state.”

List of projects requested on behalf of the First District is below.  Some projects have also received funding from the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA) and is listed below where applicable.

Bayou Meto Basin


Funds would support flood and environmental resource protection, diversion of excess water, channel improvements, waterfowl conservation and a pumping station.

Ethanol from Agriculture


Funds would support an Arkansas State University project to provide a source of inexpensive enzymes that can be used to release fermentable sugars from cellulosic feedstocks.

Osceola Harbor, AR


Funds would provide for maintenance of a navigation channel for year-round access for barge transportation.

ARRA: 1,876,000

White River Navigation to Newport, AR


Funds would increase the width and depth of the White River channel.

St. Francis Basin,AR&MO


Funds would provide protection against headwater floods and improvement of the flood-carrying capacity of the river through channel improvements and leveed floodways.

ARRA: 33,600,000

St. Francis River and Tributaries, AR & MO


Funds would provide an authorized level of flood protection.

McClellan-Kerr Arkansas River Navigation System, AR


Funds support general operation and maintenance on the Arkansas River Navigation System.

ARRA: 62,100,000

White River, AR


This project provides for maintenance of the navigation channel with sufficient width and depth to accommodate existing commerce.

ARRA: 4,128,000

Mississippi River Levees – AR, IL, KY, LA, MS, MO & TN


This project provides flood protection to rural, agricultural, and urban areas in the Lower Mississippi Valley.

ARRA: 10,881,000

Mississippi River Levees – AR, IL, KY, LA, MS, MO & TN


This project provides for the maintenance of the authorized features of the Mississippi River Levees Project.

ARRA: 15,900,000

Channel improvement – AR, IL, KY, LA, MS, MO & TN


This project would consist of stabilizing the banks of the Mississippi River to a desirable alignment and obtaining the most efficient flow characteristics for flood control and navigation.

MidSouth/Southeast BioEnergy Consortium


Funding would position the MidSouth and Southeast bioenergy industry to expand from biodiesel and grain to ethanol to commercial production of cellulostic ethanol and to develop economic and environmental viable systems to produce, harvest and process relevant feedstocks for biodisel and ethanol operations, matching feedstock availability to specific conversion technologies.

Grand Prairie Region, AR


This project will provide for agricultural water supply, ground water protection, and fish and wildlife restoration management.

White River Basin Comprehensive, AR & MO


This study will identify water resources, needs, and opportunities in addressing water resources used for water supply, flood control, waste water management, navigation, recreation and power generation.

Helena Harbor, AR


Funds would provide for maintenance of the navigation channel for year-round access to barge transportation

ARRA: 500,000

Helena Harbor, Phillips County AR


Funds would be used to provide operations activities, including surveys; and limited dredging.

ARRA: 1, 062,000