News Releases

(Tri-Cities, Wash.) U.S. Senator Patty Murray (D-Wash.) today praised President Clinton's decision to designate Washington state's Hanford Reach a national monument.

The president made his announcement this morning, as Senator Murray and Vice President Al Gore visited the Tri-Cities and prepared to float the Reach.

"I'm thrilled this day has finally arrived -- that the Hanford Reach will be protected for generations to come," said Patty Murray. "Anyone who has visited the Hanford Reach knows it deserves its new status as a national monument. From its pristine natural beauty to the salmon who spawn in its waters to its strong Native American history, the Hanford Reach is a unique American resource. This designation means more salmon restoration, more recreation and tourism, and national prominence for the Tri-Cities community and the state of Washington.

"My dad grew up in the Tri-Cities. When I started fighting to protect the Reach, he told me how proud he was that I was working to give something back to a community that has given so much to our family and our country. I want to thank President Clinton for giving such an important legacy to the people of the Tri-Cities and Washington state."

The area will encompass about 200,000 acres of federal land currently held by the Department of Energy. The Hanford Reach spans only 51 of the Columbia River's 1,200 miles, yet it spawns 80% of the wild fall Chinook produced in the entire Columbia Basin.