News Releases

Murray Announces Record Increase in Hanford Monument Budget

Dec 19 2001

$612,000 increase is largest increase of any refuge in the history of the National Wildlife Refuge System

(WASHINGTON, D.C.) -- Senator Patty Murray announced today that the Hanford Reach National Monument will receive the largest operating budget increase of any refuge in the history of the National Wildlife Refuge System.

The $612,000 increase comes after the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service determined how to distribute operations funding included in the Fiscal Year 2002 Interior Appropriations bill.

The news came in a letter to Senator Murray from James Kurth, Acting Chief of the National Wildlife Refuge System.

"This is great news for the Hanford Reach National Monument, and for the people of Washington State, who can visit this historic and pristine natural treasure. The funding will allow the FACA committee work to proceed, the planning process to move forward and begin to meet some of staffing shortfalls at the Monument," said Senator Murray.

The Interior Appropriations bill included a $10 million increase for the Refuge System's total operating budget.

The bill also included language inserted by Senator Murray directing the Service to consider the staffing and planning needs at Hanford Reach National Monument during distribution of the operations budget.

The funding increase at Hanford is made up as follows:

  • Operations increase - FACA Committee support $100,000
  • 3 Staff positions $334,000
  • Invasive species control project $78,000
  • Equipment replacement $20,000
  • Annual maintenance $80,000