Governor signs Hoff bill affirming permitting process for federal dredging activities on Columbia River

A bill sponsored by Rep. Larry Hoff affirming the permitting process for dredging activities conducted by the United States Army Corps of Engineers (USACE) on the Columbia River has been signed into law by Gov. Jay Inslee.

Under House Bill 1193, USACE actions to maintain and improve navigation channels on the Columbia River in accordance with federally mandated dredged material management and improvement project plans will be exempt from the Shoreline Management Act's permit requirements if the plans have:

  • Undergone national and state environmental policy review; and
  • Applied for a state water quality certification under the federal Clean Water Act.

“Periodically, navigation channels leading to deepwater ports on the Columbia River need to be dredged to ensure safe passage for vessels carrying our crops and goods to market,” said Hoff, R-Vancouver. “This bill will enable the United States Army Corps of Engineers to quickly dispose of dredge spoil and keep our region's most critical marine highway running smoothly. That's important not just for Washington's economic recovery, but for the nation's.”

The Columbia River shipping channel supports tens of thousands of Washington jobs and facilitates the movement of more than $21 billion in cargo every year.

House Bill 1193, which was unanimously approved by the House and Senate, will go into effect in July.

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Washington State House Republican Communications
houserepublicans.wa.gov