Capping a rare instance of congressional compromise, President Barack Obama signed a $12.3 billion water projects bill Tuesday, financing improvements ranging from a harbor expansion in Boston to levees and flood control gates in Louisiana.
Obama singled out two of the bill's main negotiators for praise — Democratic Sen. Barbara Boxer of California and Louisiana Republican Sen. David Vitter.
The new law will pay for 34 new projects over the next 10 years. Its price tag is half the amount of the last water projects bill seven years ago.
Brookings Institution study reviewed several industries under a new "infrastructure" designation.
A report released Friday by the Brookings Institution shows New Orleans as having one of the leading workforces in infrastructure business in the nation. The jobs that fall under that new category are paying high wages and are expected to last for several years.
The Army Corps of Engineers has restarted bidding for a $700 million contract to design and build permanent storm surge closure and pump stations on three canals that end in Lake Pontchartrain. Levees on two of them broke after Hurricane Katrina, letting floodwaters into the city.
The projects represent the final major construction of the post-Katrina levee system.