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  10. '14

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Occurrences in the Congressional Record

Entry Title Date
Honoring Lawrence Brooks September 15, 2014
Cedric Richmond, D-LA
"Mr. Speaker, I rise today to honor Mr. Lawrence Nathaniel Brooks, Sr. Mr. Brooks, a World War II veteran and Louisiana resident, celebrated his 105th birthday on September 12, 2014. Mr. Brooks was born in 1909 in Norwood, Louisiana. He joined the United States Army in 1940 and did basic training at Camp Shelby in Hattiesburg, Mississippi. Serving our country was a family legacy for Mr. Brooks. He had three uncles who fought in World War I, and his brother, Chester, was a member of the United States Coast Guard. The bombing of Pearl Harbor would change Mr. Brooks’ life forever. Shortly thereafter he was called to duty. He served in the predominantly African-American 91st Engineer Battalion which was stationed in New Guinea and then the Philippines during World War II. He served three white officers in his battalion, and his daily routine included cleaning the officers’ sheets, shining their shoes, making sure their uniforms were clean, and accomplishing any task these officers asked of him. Brooks attained the rank of Private 1st Class during the war. During his service, he had two alarming encounters. While he was stationed in New Guinea, the Japanese bombed the base where he was located. Additionally, Mr. Brooks was on a C-47 going from Australia to New Guinea, transporting a load of barbed wire when one of the engines went out. The crew had to work quickly to lighten up the load in order to make the plane light enough to continue on. A true New Orleanian, even Hurricane Katrina couldn’t keep Mr. Brooks away from the city he loves for too long. A few days after the levees failed and the city flooded, Mr. Brooks moved to Los Angeles. However, he returned to New Orleans a little more than a year later."
Infrastructure Needs Of America July 15, 2014
John Garamendi, D-CA
"There is a report card out on how our infrastructure is today. This was put together by the engineers and others who do this kind of work. I am just going to read through this: aviation—these are our airports—D; bridges, C-plus; dams, D; drinking water, D; energy, D; hazardous waste, D; inland waterways, D; levees, D; ports, C—whoa, that is good; public parks and recreation, C-minus; rails, C-plus; roads, D; schools, D; solid waste, B—I guess we can get rid of our trash, that is good—transit, D; and wastewater, D. So, the entire infrastructure is D."
Make It In America June 10, 2014
John Garamendi, D-CA
"I am going to put up this photo of a levee break in California. I represent 200 miles of the Sacramento River Valley and probably have over 1,100 miles of levees. Today, actually is the best of times. The levees are not breaking. Actually, we are in the middle of a drought."
Wrrda Conference Report May 22, 2014
David Vitter, R-LA
"Another very important category which I certainly deeply care about, considering the State I represent, is flood protection and levee safety. Not only does WRRDA authorize critical flood protection projects, but it also strengthens levee safety initiatives to provide critical funds to State and local agencies to make sure levees and flood protection systems stay up to par. There are over 15,000 miles of Federal levees and almost 100,000 miles of non-Federal levees protecting communities all around the country. However, many are graded as in unsatisfactory condition. These levees protect nearly 43 percent of the Nation’s population, so we need to make sure they are strong and adequate. This levee safety initiative will provide national and local leadership the resources they need to promote sound technical practices and to keep up with aging levee and protection systems."
Wrrda Conference Report May 22, 2014
John McCain, R-AZ
"Madam President, today the Senate is considering the conference agreement for the Water Resources Reform and Development Act of 2014, WRRDA. This bill contains roughly $12.3 billion in additional authorized spending for a variety of water projects that fall under the jurisdiction of the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers civil works division. This bill supports the construction and maintenance of many of our Nation’s dams, levees, harbors, ports, and river ways to name a few."

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