The Continuing Authorities Program (CAP) authorizes the Corps to plan, design, and construct small scale projects under existing program authorities from Congress. Local governments, agencies, and tribes seeking assistance may request the Corps to investigate potential water resource issues that may fit a particular authority.
CAP projects are conducted in two phases. The first phase is a two-step feasibility study where the federal interest is established and a report documenting issues, objectives, a recommended alternative (35 percent design), and environmental compliance is completed. The feasibility study is initially funded with $100,000 in federal funds and cost-shared 50 percent federal, 50 percent non-federal for all remaining costs during the study.
Upon completion of the feasibility study and pending project approval from the Corps, the project enters the design and implementation phase. During this phase, the design is taken to 100 percent and the project is constructed. Before a project enters this phase, the non-federal sponsor must agree to the following:
- Provide all Lands, Easements, Rights-of-Ways, Relocations, and Disposal areas (LERRD) necessary for construction and maintenance of the project. The cost of LERRD is applied towards the non-federal sponsor’s cost-share.
- Maintain and operate the project after completion without cost to the government (most projects).
- Prevent future encroachment, which might interfere with proper functioning of the project.
- Assume responsibility for any cash requirements including costs in excess of applicable federal cost limitations.
The typical cost-share for the design and implementation phase is 65 percent federal and 35 percent non-federal, unless otherwise noted below.
Section 14 – Emergency Streambank and Shoreline Protection
Flood Control Act of 1946, as amended
The Corps is authorized to construct bank stabilization and protection projects to protect endangered public and non-profit infrastructure including highways, bridges, and other essential public services such as hospitals, cultural sites, and utilities from flood and storm damage due to erosion. Privately-owned infrastructure and facilities are not eligible for protection under this authority. The maximum federal dollar limit is $1.5 million per project.
Section 103 – Beach Erosion and Hurricane and Storm Damage Reduction
Rivers and Harbors Act of 1962, as amended
This authority allows the Corps to assist in protection of public infrastructure on small beaches against erosion caused by natural storm driven waves and currents. Typical projects include protecting utilities, roadways, and other public infrastructure systems. The maximum federal limit is $3 million per project.
Section 111 – Shore Damage Prevention or Mitigation Cause by Federal Navigation Projects
Rivers and Harbors Act of 1968, as amended
The Corps is authorized to investigate and construct projects for prevention or mitigation of shore damages to public and privately owned shores along coastlines that are attributable to federal navigation projects. The maximum federal limit is $5 million per project.
Section 107 – Navigation Improvements
Rivers and Harbors Act of 1960, as amended
This authority allows the Corps to plan, design, and construct small projects for commercial navigation purposes such as channels, breakwaters, and jetties to ensure safe and efficient use of the Nation’s navigable waterways.
Section 204 – Beneficial Use of Dredged Material
Water Resources Development Act of 1992, as amended
The Corps can restore, protect, or create aquatic wetland habitats in connection with construction maintenance dredging of an authorized federal navigation project. The cost-share under this program is split 75 percent federal and 25 percent federal for all costs above the base disposal plan, where the base disposal plan is the least costly plan for typical disposal of dredged material. The federal government pays 100 percent of the costs up to the cost of the base disposal plan.
Section 205 – Flood Control
Flood Control Act of 1948, as amended
The Corps, under this authority, can investigate and construct local flood control projects through construction or improvement of flood control works. Typical flood control projects include levees, floodwalls, channel modifications, pumping stations, or some non-structural measures. The maximum federal limit is $7 million per project.
Section 206 – Aquatic Habitat Ecosystem Restoration
Water Resources Development Act of 1996, as amended
The Corps can restore and protect aquatic ecosystems and wetland habitats to improve the quality of the environment. Examples of projects include day-lighting, channel modifications, and wetland restoration. The maximum federal limit is $5 million per project.
Section 1135 – Project Modifications for Improvement of the Environment
Water Resources Development Act of 1996, as amended
The Corps is authorized to assist in restoration of degraded ecosystems through the modification or Corps of Engineers’ structures, operations, or implementation of measures in affected areas. The maximum federal limit is $5 million per project.
For additional information regarding the Continuing Authorities Program, contact the Civil Works Branch at 1-855-828-7015 or at NWSCivilWorks@usace.army.mil