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Rep. Luria addresses needs of Back Bay and southern watersheds

Congresswoman Elaine Luria toured Back Bay National Wildlife Refuge Tuesday morning to learn how the Infrastructure Bill could help its overall health.

VIRGINIA BEACH, Va. — Rising sea levels and flooding are issues we know all too well in Hampton Roads.

Congresswoman Elaine Luria said money coming from the trillion-dollar infrastructure bill will work to solve those problems.

“It’s probably been a decade that we’ve been waiting to see a huge investment in infrastructure," Luria said. "And it’s really important for our roads, bridges, tunnel, our port for example.”

She said Hampton Roads is at an advantage because we know what our issues are. Luria said we just need to get those projects started.

“We’ve been talking about sea levels rising and flooding and we know where our needs are," she said. "So to see some of those resources come in and you know, the idea there’s shovel-ready projects just waiting for those resources just really puts us at an advantage over other parts of the country.”

Tuesday morning, she met with Virginia Beach leaders at the Back Bay National Wildlife Refuge touring the refuge and learning about the challenges the Back Bay faces.

“Flooding is very different," Luria said. "It’s windblown flooding versus tidal flooding for the Chesapeake Bay.”

Luria said the Back Bay and other southern watersheds aren’t getting the same attention and resources like the Chesapeake Bay which is the reason for her visit. She said she’s forming a coalition with Virginia and North Carolina leaders to improve the health of southern watersheds.

“I think that building that coalition we could have the opportunity to bring similar resources to this watershed,”

Congresswoman Luria said we could expect these projects to start within six months to a year.