Thanks to U.S. Senator Catherine Cortez Masto, Northern Nevada will have the resources that it needs to protect homes and businesses from flooding in the Truckee Meadows. On Wednesday, Congress approved America’s Water Infrastructure Act of 2018 with a vote of 99-1. The Act includes a provision by Senator Cortez Masto to protect $181 million in federal funding for the Truckee Meadows Flood Control Project.

The Truckee Meadows Flood Control Project was designed to mitigate the devastating effects of flooding. It represents one of the largest public works projects ever in northern Nevada. The American Society of Civil Engineers scored Nevada’s flood control infrastructure as a C- in its most recent report card, underscoring the importance of securing federal funding for flood prevention efforts.

Many communities in Nevada are also taking steps to ensure that funding for infrastructure projects is spent wisely. Communities are adopting uniform rules to govern public works construction and are using an open, competitive process to select construction materials. These steps reduce construction costs, produce higher-quality materials, and support better jobs. According to one estimate, municipalities that don’t use an open, competitive process to select construction materials spend about 30% more than municipalities that do. These steps also ensure that infrastructure projects are executed with the highest degree of professionalism and that construction materials meet rigorous performance standards. Nevada is a shining example of how communities can stretch limited funding for infrastructure projects without compromising standards.

We are encouraged that Congress passed the water infrastructure bill – the most comprehensive infrastructure legislation this Congress – with overwhelming bipartisan support. And we thank Senator Cortez Masto for leading the way to ensure that Nevada has the resources that it needs for critical projects that protect our communities and create jobs.  We here at Nevada Forward believe that bipartisan work can and should still continue in our halls of Congress and think that ensuring we rebuild our cities, roads, schools and other infrastructure will be the way that we keep Nevadans working with good paying jobs as well as bring our cities and rural areas into the 21st century.