Jan 14 2020
WASHINGTON – Today, U.S. Sens. Mark R. Warner and Tim Kaine (both D-VA) announced $286.9 million in federal funds from the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers to complete long-standing projects in Buchanan and Dickenson counties. The funding is made available through the Additional Supplemental Appropriations for Disaster Relief Act, a bipartisan bill supported by Sens. Warner and Kaine that was signed into law on June 6, 2019 to help communities construct flood and storm damage reduction projects.
“We’re pleased to announce these federal funds to support the completion of critical flooding mitigation projects in Dickenson and Buchanan counties,” said the Senators. “Once completed, these projects will better protect schools, local businesses, and homes from potential flood damage.”
Buchanan County will receive $235.6 million in supplemental funding to complete the Hurley High School Floodproofing Agreement as well as the Buchanan County Career and Technical Center Relocation Agreement. Funds will also be used to implement voluntary floodproofing and acquisition actions for up to 730 residential and commercial structures.
Dickenson County will receive $51.3 million in supplemental funding that will be used to relocate the Haysi Municipal Building and implement voluntary floodproofing and acquisition actions for up to 218 residential and commercial structures.
As a result of the 1977 flood that caused roughly $257 million in damages across Dickenson and Buchanan counties and several states, Congress authorized flood-protection measures in the Energy and Water Development Appropriations (WRDA) Act of 1981. Section 202 of the bill directed the Secretary of the Army to begin the design and construction of flood damage reduction measures of the Tug and Levisa Forks of the Big Sandy River Basin that stretches into Southwest Virginia. Today’s announcement will help Buchanan and Dickenson counties fully fund their long-awaited projects.
In the Senate, Sens. Warner and Kaine have long supported legislation that makes water infrastructure rehabilitation projects like these possible. In 2018, the Senators voted to reauthorize WRDA to support critical water-related projects across the Commonwealth.