SALMON: Senator Murray Delivers $80 Million for Salmon Restoration in Yearly Spending Legislation

Mar 10 2009

Critical Salmon restoration funding passes Senate, will be signed into law by President Obama

(Washington, D.C.) - U.S. Senator Patty Murray (D-WA) today announced that she has secured $80 million in funding for the Pacific Coastal Salmon Recovery Fund (PCSRF) in the 2009 Omnibus Appropriations bill. The $80 million for the PCSRF will support efforts to restore the endangered Pacific salmon population and improve salmon habitats throughout the West Coast and Alaska. The funding is included in the Fiscal Year 2009 Omnibus Appropriations Bill which passed the Senate by voice vote today. Now that the Omnibus has passed the Senate and the U.S. House of Representatives, it will be sent to the President for his signature. President Obama has signaled that he will sign the bill.

“Salmon are an important part of our state’s economic base,” said Senator Murray. “So with our economy struggling, this funding is more important than ever.  These funds will support research, stewardship, and restoration projects that will help restore salmon runs in our state and region.”

The PCSRF restores endangered and listed stocks of Pacific salmon through the improvement and expansion of salmon habitats. It also supplements existing state, tribal and local programs that foster partnerships in salmon and steelhead recovery and conservation.

In Washington state, the PCSRF works through the Salmon Recovery Funding Board (SRFB) which provides grants on a competitive basis to a variety of habitat protection and restoration programs. Since 2000 the SFRB has awarded grants to 695 different projects in Washington state. Projects have included fixing or removing obstacles to fish migration, opening up streams for salmon habitat, planting trees and shrubs along streams to provide ideal habitat conditions, decreasing the amount of soil flowing into streams, changing river flows and opening miles of transition areas for salmon headed to and from the sea.

Senator Murray has been a steadfast supporter of salmon recovery and has secured more than $140 million for salmon recovery efforts for Washington state alone over the past 5 years.