Hoeven: OMB Director Confirms $35 Million for Red River Valley Flood Protection in FY2018, Expresses Support for Senator's Efforts to Advance P3 Projects

WASHINGTON – Senator John Hoeven this week spoke with Office of Management and Budget (OMB) Director Mick Mulvaney, who confirmed that the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers’ Fiscal Year (FY) 2018 work plan will include $35 million to support construction of flood protection in the Red River Valley. Director Mulvaney also expressed support for a Hoeven-sponsored provision in the Senate’s Energy and Water Appropriations legislation that ensures fair treatment of projects that use alternative financing methods during the Corps’ cost-benefit analysis, like the public-private partnership (P3) used for flood protection in the Fargo-Moorhead region. Hoeven is advancing P3s as a solution to help work through the Army Corps’ backlog, and his provision will help ensure the Red River Valley project continues to be funded in future work plans.

“The Army Corps’ work plan will ensure progress continues on flood protection in the Red River Valley as local officials work to address Minnesota and upstream concerns,” Hoeven said. “This is one of the strengths of the public-private partnership model that we’re demonstrating in Fargo-Moorhead. Construction can be completed in phases, helping to prevent delays and the associated costs. That’s why we are promoting the Corps’ use of P3s to address their project backlog and deliver much-needed infrastructure investment for our nation. Director Mulvaney is a key figure in this effort, and we appreciate his support.”

As a member of the Senate Appropriations Committee on Energy and Water, Hoeven secured increased funding for the Corps’ construction account, which helped ensure the agency could fund efforts like comprehensive flood protection in the Red River Valley. Further, the senator has worked to ensure the support of key administration officials, including Army Corps Chief Lt. Gen. Todd Semonite, Assistant Secretary of the Army for Civil Works R.D. James and OMB Director Mulvaney. During a recent Appropriations Committee hearing, Hoeven received a commitment from Semonite to help fund construction in the Fargo-Moorhead region as efforts continue to resolve the concerns of Minnesota and upstream groups.

Hoeven has also secured a provision in the America’s Water Infrastructure Act that will allow flood control structures under the updated comprehensive flood protection plan for the Fargo-Moorhead region to be built on land purchased with Hazard Mitigation Grant Program (HMGP) funding. The senator’s provision grants the authority needed to implement the changes recommended by the joint task force convened by Governors Doug Burgum and Mark Dayton.