News Releases

Murray Announces Nearly $41 Million for Washington State Priorities in Interior Appropriations Bill

Oct 10 2001

$15 million for land acquisition, $25.8 million for Elwha River Restoration will protect natural treasures, preserve quality of life

(WASHINGTON, D.C.) – In the first Appropriations Conference report to be completed by Congress, U.S. Senator Patty Murray (D-Wash.) today announced $40.8 million in earmarks for land acquisition and restoration projects in Washington state.

A member of the Interior Appropriations Subcommittee, Senator Murray was named as a conferee to work out the differences between the House and Senate versions of the Interior Appropriations bill. Throughout this process, Murray used her position to secure $25.8 million for restoration of the Elwha River and a total of $15 million for land acquisition projects ranging from the Columbia Gorge to the Central Cascades to the Nisqually National Wildlife Refuge.

"I am very pleased that so many of Washington state's land acquisition and restoration projects will be funded under the 2002 Interior bill," Murray said. "Not only will these funds support the preservation of our state's natural treasures, but they will help protect our wildlife, stimulate our economy and preserve the way of life that those of us in Washington hold so dear."

The $15 million secured by Murray for land acquisition projects in Washington state includes:
  • $6 million for Forest Service acquisition of lands in the Columbia Gorge
  • $4 million for Forest Service acquisition of lands in the central Cascades related to the I-90/Plum Creek land exchange
  • $2 million for Forest Service acquisition of lands bordering the Skagit River
  • $1 million for National Park Service acquisition of lands for Ebey's Landing
  • $1 million for National Park Service acquisition of non-federal lands within Olympic Nat. Park
  • $1 million for Fish and Wildlife Service land acquisition near the Nisqually National Wildlife Refuge

    "I am particularly proud of the continued funding that this bill provides for Ebey's Landing. Protection of this historic reserve is crucial to well-being of the surrounding community. I am pleased that more of this area will now be preserved to help teach our children about the area's history and to protect our wildlife," Murray said.

    Murray also secured $25.8 million for restoration of the Elwha River, the largest construction project under the jurisdiction of the National Park Service.

    "The restoration of the Elwha River is a top priority for me. This project presents a tremendous opportunity to restore a declining salmon run without impacting the local economy. I will continue to work to secure full funding for this important project."