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Legislation & Policy Committee Meeting Summary — February 2nd, 2023

Link to recording: https://youtu.be/CHXn1K8k-tA

  1. Call to Order – Kirsten Wallace, UMRBA; Chair
  2. Introductions of participants on the call – Kirsten Wallace, Beth Brown, Beth Callaway, Chace Tavelli, Drew Dehoff, Geoff Bowman, John Anderson, Kelly Pennington, Richard Friesner, Wade Loseman, Chris Cann, Robby Short
  3. Updates from Van Scoyoc Associates – John Anderson, Van Scoyoc Associates

Happy Groundhog’s Day – a new WOTUS rule was issued which means at least 6 years more of litigation. Reinstates 2015 rule with modifications. Lawsuits have already begun; 25 governors with 18 industry groups. Chairman Graves has introduced a bill to prevent WOTUS from taking effect; Capito has introduced same on the Senate side. Supreme Court is on the verge of issuing a decision on the Sackett case (sometime before June). Hearing will be held on Feb 8th @ House T&I at 10amET.

House/Senate are wrapping up organizing work. Committee and subcommittee rosters are mostly done; beginning to hold hearings.

President’s Budget for FY2024 will come out March 9th. That will kick off the appropriations process in Congress. Approps and subcommittees will begin to hold their hearings with federal agency testimonies sometime in March. Goal is to finish it up by Oct 1st 2023. Individual House member portals will open up for comments this month to submit funding requests.

Water Resources Development Act – Senate EPW and House T&I wll prepare WRDA 2024. Senate staff indicate they’ll get started around July.

Earmarks will likely need to have a federal nexxus. USACE has little wiggle room for additional spending with earmarks.


4. FY2024 USGS Streamgage Support

    1. See draft FY2024 letter included with this agenda
    2. USGS FY2023 budget recap

Highlight the changes from the last letter for stakeholders

Need a plan for who to target by mid-Feb

There may different versions that will be scaled down from this version

Add in intro that signatories are across the board of all types


5. NIDIS Reauthorization

    1. 2022-2026 NIDIS Strategic Plan
  • Beth to conduct a call w/ Veva & Elizabeth
  • Assign a subgroup to look at the current NIDIS authorization. What would we want to reimagine?
  • What does ICWP want to bring forward at the NIDIS Executive Council meeting in April?

Subgroup – someone from Missouri, Pooja, a Board member, Kirsten?


6. WRDA 2022

    1. Decide if ICWP should prepare comments for USACE public comment period (due March 21st)
    2. Final bill text: What did we achieve? What are potential policy improvements for the next WRDA?

Beth to prepare draft letter – PAS – could get intern help


7. Set next meeting – March 9th at 3pmCT