Washington, D.C. – The Senate Environment and Public Works Committee today approved legislation co-authored by U.S. Sen. Jim Jeffords, I – Vt., to authorize U.S. Army Corps of Engineer water projects in Vermont and across the nation. "This is a crucial bill that authorizes Army Corps projects in all 50 states. We are long overdue in authorizing needed water resources projects for navigation, flood control and ecosystem restoration. Among other Vermont projects, this legislation authorizes funding to assess and fix many of Vermont's 2000 dams, many of which are more than 100 years old," said Jeffords, the ranking member of the Committee. The Water Resources Development Act authorizes projects for the planning, design, construction, operation and maintenance of water resource projects. These projects are designed to provide the nation with improved flood damage reduction, hurricane and storm damage reduction, commercial navigation, environmental and natural resource restoration, hydroelectric power, and recreation. The legislation includes authorization for Vermont project such as: - River and wetlands restoration programs for the upper Connecticut River; - Develop a hydrologic model of the Connecticut River to evaluate restoration projects; - The construction of a dispersal barrier for the Lake Champlain canal, to protect Lake Champlain from sea lamprey and other invasive species. The bill now goes to the full Senate for consideration.