News & Events for Chesapeake Bay

Appropriations snapshot for ICW dredging and maintenance

Date Posted: 2016-05-02
Source: Atlantic Intracoastal Waterway Association

The Atlantic Intracoastal Waterway Association (AIWA) works hard on the local, state and federal levels to keep our waterways open – and please join Waterway Guide to support its efforts. Lately, it has been coordinating legislative support at the federal level to make maintaining "Marine Highway 95" (AICW) and "Marine Highway 10" (GIWW) a national priority. The following is a Fiscal Year 2016 and 2017 Appropriations Snapshot, as presented in AIWA's latest newsletter (used by permission):

Dredge "Wilco" at Isle of Palms section of ICW (Photo: AIWA)

In December 2015, Congress passed the FY 2016 Energy and Water Appropriations (E&W) Bill as part of the year-end Omnibus Bill. The E&W portion of the bill included $45 million in funding for Additional Dredging Needs for Inland Waterways, and $48 million in funding for Small, Remote or Subsistence Harbors or Channels totaling $93 million. This amount is more than was proposed by the House of Representatives and slightly lower than the Senate amounts.

These funds have now been allocated by the Corps of Engineers through a work plan and the AIWW received an additional $6.7 million for a total of $13,931,000. This additional funding increased the original amount in the President’s budget by over 90%. Looking forward to FY 2017, the President’s budget included $6.911 million for the waterway. While this amount is not nearly enough to cover the operations and maintenance needs for the waterway, we are working to encourage Congress to include Additional Dredging Needs funding in the final appropriation bills. 

The table below shows how the AIWW faired in federal funding in FY 15, FY16, and the current funding proposal in the Presidential budget request for FY 17:


Final FY 15 Funding

Presidential Budget for FY 16 

Work Plan Increase in FY 16 

Final FY16 Funding 

Presidential Budget for FY 17 





































  • Comment submitted by Fred - Thu, May 5th

    Somehow they found enough money to dredge the channel in Ft. Lauderdale... between 15th street causeway and Oakland Park bridges... Here's the good part.. they're dredging the already 10'-12' deep channel down to 17' so that the Mega Yachts can more easily move in that area.... the old Golden Rule in action again..." If you have the gold, you make the rules" The story was in today's Ft. Lauderdale Sun Sentinel newspaper.

  • Comment submitted by Mike Ahart, News Editor, - Thu, May 5th

    Thanks for the comment, Fred. We posted that info too: Fort Lauderdale ICW dredging begins ( The big difference is that Florida has its tax-supported Florida Inland Navigation District to fund these projects (and big business support behind it), whereas SC and GA have relied on federal funds which, with the "no earmark" rules over the last several years, provide for little more than commercial port projects.

  • Comment submitted by WM G Crawford, jr - Fri, May 6th

    Every year Florida gets shorted because we formed FIND in 1927 to buy our waterway from a private company for turnover to the federal government and to buy and maintain any required easements. In exchange, the federal government promised to enlarge the waterway and perpetually maintain it. Congress has broken that promise to the nation's second most populous state for years. Florida was the only coastal state required to buy its private waterway and turn it over to the federal government. Congress used federal money to buy the Cape Cod Canal et al. See, "Florida's Big Dig" by William G. Crawford, Jr., Florida Historical Society Press (2007), winner of the 2008 Rembert Patrick Award.

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