News Releases

Murray Secures $62 Million to Help PNNL Relocate 300 Area Facilities

Jun 27 2007

Murray included $27 Million over the President's Budget proposal in the Senate Energy and Water Appropriations bill

(Washington, D.C.) – Today, U.S. Senator Patty Murray helped advance $62 million to enable the Pacific Northwest National Laboratory (PNNL) to relocate critical facilities that must be moved because they are in the path of cleanup in Hanford's 300 Area.  This funding was included in the Senate Energy and Water Appropriations Sub-Committee, of which Murray is a senior member.  This funding is in addition to funds secured by Senator Murray two weeks ago in the Department of Homeland Security Appropriations bill, bringing the total amount funded in FY08 to $77 Million.

Funding Profile

Department of Energy, Office of Science – $45 Million
This amount is $10 Million over the President's Budget.

Department of Energy, National Nuclear Security Administration  –  $17 Million
There was no funding provided by the Administration in this account.  Senator Murray included this funding to help level out the spending profile of the project in out years.

Department of Homeland Security (DHS) - $15 Million
Senator Murray secured $15 Million in the DHS Appropriations bill two weeks ago.  DHS is one of the three agencies that have agreed to a memorandum of understanding to fund the Capabilities Replacement Project.  The project called for DHS to provide significant funding this year, but no funding was requested in the President's Budget.   

"PNNL is providing cutting-edge research that enhances our national security," Murray stated.  "From nuclear non-proliferation and detection projects to innovative new energy efficiency and sustainability programs, PNNL is a national asset, and this funding will help the lab continue to be at the forefront of scientific advancement." 

PNNL is in the process of relocating out of facilities that are being decommissioned and demolished as part of the Hanford 300 Area cleanup.  Under a memorandum of understanding, the relocation costs to move out of 300 Area facilities will be funded by three federal agencies:  Two agencies in the Department of Energy (DOE) and the Department of Homeland Security (DHS).  

Working to Preserve the Use Permit

In addition to her work to adequately fund replacement facilities, Senator Murray also inserted key language in the bill to preserve PNNL's Use Permit.  The Use Permit is a tool unique to PNNL among DOE's national labs which allows PNNL to provide excess lab capacity to private researchers.  Senator Murray's language ensures that the Use Permit is preserved both during the bidding of PNNL's contract, and will be retained in the bid that is awarded the management contract for the lab.  Senator Murray, along with members of the Washington state delegation, also sent a letter to DOE Deputy Secretary Clay Sell in support of the Use Permit.  

The Energy and Water Appropriations bill will next move to the full Appropriations Committee for debate later this week.  It will then move to the Senate Floor for deliberation.