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Legislative Update: Senate Approves FY 2017 Energy and Water Development Appropriations Legislation Containing $151 Million for ARC

May 2016


 
On May 12, the U.S. Senate approved its fiscal year (FY) 2017 energy and water development appropriations bill, which provides $151 million for ARCís nonhighway programs. This amount is $5 million more than the Commission received in FY 2016. The total includes $75 million for the Commissionís base program (an increase of $5 million from FY 2016); $50 million for the administrationís POWER Initiative to help communities that have been adversely impacted by changes in the coal industry and power sector; $20 million for a program of industrial site and workforce development focused primarily on the automotive supplier sector and the aviation sector in Southern and South Central Appalachia; and $6 million for a program of basic infrastructure improvement in economically distressed counties in Central Appalachia.

Action by the U.S. House of Representatives on its version of the FY 2017 energy and water development appropriations legislation is expected later this month. The House Committee on Appropriations approved the bill on April 19. It provides $146 million for ARCís nonhighway programs, the same amount the Commission received in FY 2016. The total includes $50 million for POWER, and $10 million to continue a program of high-speed broadband deployment in economically distressed counties within the Central Appalachian region that have been most negatively impacted by the downturn in the coal industry.