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Luria amendment to modernize nuclear energy, water infrastructure passes House

Elaine LuriaThe House has passed H.R. 7617, the Department of Defense Appropriations Act, and included in the omnibus spending package are provisions that will help improve nuclear energy development by allocating $1.44 billion in FY21 and an additional $1.25 billion in emergency funds for nuclear energy.

Congresswoman Elaine Luria, D-Va., cosponsored an amendment included in the bill that provides $2 million to renovate and expand the Continuous Electron Beam Accelerator Facility at the Thomas Jefferson National Accelerator Facility in Newport News.

CEBAF is the site of groundbreaking nuclear research.

“As a naval officer who operated nuclear reactors on aircraft carriers, I know that nuclear power must be part of any solution to transitioning to a clean energy future,” said Luria. “I am pleased to see that this bill makes vital investments in our nuclear infrastructure, which will ultimately strengthen our national security and economy.”

“Building on the leadership of Ms. Luria in championing nuclear energy, this bill invests in research, development, and demonstration activities that develop the next generation of clean and safe reactors, further improve the safety and economic viability of our current reactor fleet, and contribute to the nation’s long-term leadership in the global nuclear power industry,” said Subcommittee on Energy and Water Development Chairwoman Marcy Kaptur.

The Department of Defense Appropriations Act also provides significant funding for Army Corps of Engineers projects to improve water infrastructure. These include:

  • Construction: $2.6 billion in FY21 and an additional $10 billion in emergency funds;
    • Construction – Coastal Navigation: $150 million in additional funding for navigation, $150 million above the budget request.
  • Operation & Maintenance: $3.84 billion in FY21 and an additional $5 billion in emergency funds;

“Our community needs resilient infrastructure to thrive economically,” Luria said. “That is why I advocated for robust funding to bolster the development and maintenance of water infrastructure throughout Coastal Virginia and our nation.”