Bipartisan legislation includes provisions to help repair aging bridges over Cape Cod Canal, expedite the completion of the dredging of Plymouth Harbor, boost Boston Harbor’s maritime economy, and improve coastal resilience


Washington (October 10, 2018) – Massachusetts Senators Edward J. Markey and Elizabeth Warren today applaud the passage of America’s Water Infrastructure Act of 2018, which includes several key provisions benefiting Massachusetts. Senator Markey is a member of the Environment and Public Works Committee, which has jurisdiction over the legislation. 


“Massachusetts communities will have more resources and authorities needed to modernize their water infrastructure, prepare for the adverse impacts of climate change, and promote public safety with this legislation,” said Senators Markey and Warren. “It’s a simple formula: more funding and tools equals greater economic growth, more resilient communities, and a better environment.”


The senators’ provisions incorporated into the legislation include:


  • Sagamore and Bourne Bridges - Directing the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers to repair or replace critical evacuation routes, such as the Sagamore and Bourne Bridges - two 80-year old bridges that connect the 200,000 people living on Cape Cod to the mainland;


  • Plymouth Harbor - Expediting the completion of the dredging of the Plymouth Harbor, so this critical project is implemented prior to the 400th anniversary of the voyage of the Mayflower and the settlement at Plymouth in 2020;


  • Towns of Salisbury, Newbury, and Sandwich - Increasing the funding caps for three coastal protection programs, helping the Towns of Salisbury, Newbury, and Sandwich to implement beach nourishment projects to protect their communities;


  • Boston Harbor - Modifying the Boston Harbor Improvement Project, allowing the Port to build more expansive berths to house ships;
  • Muddy River - Reevaluating the Muddy River Environmental Restoration project, to pave the way for reauthorizing this critical project;


  • Town of Sandwich - Limiting the duration of easements required for beneficial use projects, allowing the Town of Sandwich to use this program to place sand on their beach;


  • Town of Sandwich – Ensuring the Corps pays for all of the operation and maintenance costs of projects implemented to address erosion caused by federal infrastructure, like the jetties at the mouth of Cape Cod Canal.


  • Requiring the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to appoint not fewer than one employee in each regional office to serve as a liaison to minority, tribal, and low-income communities, so these disenfranchised communities can have better access to the various resources and tools provided by the EPA.