H.R. 2749; the Dam Authorization, Maintenance, and Safety (DAMS) Act would authorize the Secretary of the Interior to repair or modify aging dams and evaluate whether additional modifications could be made to the dam facility to increase water storage capacity. Water storage has been a long standing issue in addressing California’s drought crisis, and by restoring and improving California’s existing dams, the Golden State could dramatically increase its storage capacity at little cost to taxpayers.
“Solving California’s drought crisis is a top priority for me, and at this point almost everything is on the table,” said Representative Knight, “This bill is one of many steps we need to provide relief for our state.”
Currently, the process for repairing water infrastructure is complicated and narrow in scope. For example, the Secretary of the Interior can repair dams in light of “new hydrologic or seismic data” but cannot make modifications for normal deterioration. The DAMS Act would grant the Secretary of the Interior this authority, improving California’s water storage capacity and providing relief for its drought.
H.R. 2749 was introduced on Friday and now awaits assignment to committee.