Rep Cuellar Announces Mission Reach Project to Receive $10 Million in Federal Reimbursement
Double the Reimbursement Amount in the Previous Federal Budget
Today, Congressman Henry Cuellar (D-TX-28) announced that when the House of Representatives votes this week on the Omnibus Appropriations Act, which will fund the federal government for fiscal year 2017 (FY17), the bill will include a proposed $10 million in reimbursement for the Mission Reach project. The bill also included language instructing the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE) to investigate ways to address environmental concerns around Mitchell Lake. Congressman Cuellar requested both of these provisions as part of his role on the Appropriations Committee.
Mission Reach was a USACE project to prevent San Antonio River flooding and restore natural plant and animal habitats in 2013. However, the money to complete it was loaned to the project by Bexar County. The federal government has slowly been paying back the funds to Bexar County since that time. In fiscal year 2016 (FY16), the project received $5 million in reimbursement. If the Omnibus bill passes the House of Representatives this week, the project will receive double that amount for FY17.
“I would like to thank Senators Cornyn and Cruz, and my fellow Congressman from San Antonio – Rep. Castro, Rep. Smith, Rep. Hurd, and Rep. Doggett – for their help accelerating its repayment of these Bexar County funds,” said Congressman Cuellar. “The Mission Reach project has had undeniable benefits to the community. However, it is time for Bexar County to be reimbursed for its loan to the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers. I’m glad these requests I made to help my district made it to the final bill.”
According to the San Antonio River Authority, “The Mission Reach Ecosystem Restoration and Recreation Project has transformed an eight mile stretch of the San Antonio River into a quality riparian woodland ecosystem. This unique project restores riverine features and riparian woodlands, reintroduces native plants, enhances aquatic habitat, and reconnects cultural and historical features.”