The U.S. Senate and House voted to overturn President George W. Bush’s veto of the Water Resources Development Act or 2007 (WRDA), the first veto override in his presidency.
Despite President Bush’s protest that the $23 billion water resources bill was filled with unnecessary projects, the Senate voted 79-14 and the House voted 361-54 to override the veto, according to an Associated Press article. Both votes easily exceeded the two-thirds majority needed in each chamber to negate a presidential veto.
The AP report notes that the bill funds hundreds of Army Corps of Engineers projects, such as dams, sewage plants, and beach restoration, that are important to local communities and their representatives. It also includes money for the hurricane-hit Gulf Coast and for Florida Everglades restoration efforts.
The bill — the first water system restoration and flood control authorization passed by Congress since 2000 — would cost $11.2 billion over the next four years, and $12 billion in the 10 years after that, according to the Congressional Budget Office.
The bill would authorize the construction of navigation improvements for the Upper Mississippi River, at an estimated federal cost of $1.9 billion, and an ecosystem restoration project for the Upper Mississippi costing $1.7 billion, according to the AP article.
(Source: The Associated Press)