- Associated Press - Thursday, February 12, 2015

JACKSON, Miss. (AP) - Mississippi Republican Sen. Thad Cochran is questioning the lack for funding for Mississippi Delta flood control projects in President Barrack Obama’s new budget.

Cochran, chairman of the Senate Appropriations Committee, said Wednesday the White House is recommending no funding for the Delta Headwaters Project and the Upper Yazoo Projects.

The projects are designed to reduce flood risks in the Mississippi Delta.

After the Great Flood of 1927, Congress passed the Flood Control Act of 1928, creating the Mississippi River & Tributaries System under the direction of the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers.

The project calls for the maintenance of levees to contain flood flows, channel improvement and stabilization to increase the flood carrying capacity of the river and tributary basin improvements for major drainage basins to include dams and reservoirs, auxiliary channels and pumping stations.

“There has been a steady but sure decline of commitment from the federal government for our inland waterways system, the Mississippi River and Tributaries Project and other projects around the country,” Cochran said Wednesday after a subcommittee review of budget requests for the Corps of Engineers.

He said the funding levels proposed by the White House for the Corps’ important infrastructure accounts are far below the levels provided by Congress in the recent omnibus appropriations bill.

The budget request for the Mississippi River & Tributaries Project for FY2016 is $225 million in 2016, which Cochran said is more than $100 million below the average amount of MR&T; funding provided by Congress over the past 30 years.

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