Area members of Congress team up to fund Mississippi River lock and dam improvementsView Source
Two St. Louis-area members of Congress are happy with — as well as keeping an eye on — $75 million in the proposed 2024 federal budget to improve locks and dams.
U.S. Reps. Blaine Luetkemeyer, R-St. Elizabeth, Missouri, and Nikki Budzinski, D-Springfield, Illinois, are backing the spending that would upgrade locks and dams along the Mississippi and Illinois rivers.
The two lawmakers’ districts share the Mississippi along portions of St. Charles and Madison counties.
The money is part of the House Energy and Water Appropriations bill that now goes before the full House.
Budzinski said the Mississippi is crucial to farmers in her district. “But the locks and dams they depend on are nearly a century old. By modernizing our inland waterway infrastructure, we can help our family farmers get their corn and soybeans to market more quickly.”
Said Luetkemeyer: “These waterways play a critical role in our state’s trade, agriculture, tourism, and larger economy. This funding provides critical improvements ... to keep commerce flowing.”
Also supporting the spending is U.S. Rep. Sam Graves, R-Tarkio, whose district covers the area along the Mississippi from Lincoln County to north of Canton.