Pipeline Could Help Reservation Communities

Washington D.C. U.S. Senator Pete Domenici today confirmed that the Senate has given final approval and cleared for White House action a bill that will continue funding for two water projects in northwest New Mexico.

Domenici, as ranking Republican on the Senate Energy and Water Development Appropriations Subcommittee, played a lead role in finalizing the FY2002 Energy and Water Development Appropriations Bill approved by the Senate today. The $24.6 billion bill that funds the Energy Department and federal water projects will now be sent to the White House for the President’s approval.

As a lead negotiator in House-Senate conference committee negotiations, Domenici worked to retain $16 million in the bill to continue progress on the Animas-La Plata project in the Four Corners region. In addition, he secured a $500,000 appropriation to continue development of the Navajo-Gallup water pipeline project.

“Both of these projects are of great importance in meeting the water needs of diverse users in northwest New Mexico,” Domenici said. “This funding increase should put the Animas-La Plata project well on its way. I also look forward to progress on the Navajo-Gallup pipeline project with the availability of this money and the joint efforts of tribal and city leaders.”

The $16 million appropriation for Animas-La Plata would be utilized for project facilities design, gas pipeline relocation, and related mitigation and cultural resources activities.

This funding level is $4 million over the administration’s budget request. Through Domenici’s efforts as a Senate Appropriations Committee member, Congress last fall enacted provisions included in the Colorado Ute Indian Water Settlement Act Amendments of 2000 (S.2508) as part of an appropriations bill.

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