Jun 30 2005


Senate Passes FY 2006 Interior Appropriations Bill

WASHINGTON, DC - U.S. Senator Richard Shelby (R-AL), a member of the Senate Appropriations Committee, today announced Senate approval of several funding requests for Alabama included in the Fiscal Year 2006 Interior Appropriations Bill. The FY 2006 Interior Appropriations Bill will now go to a conference committee with the House of Representatives for consideration.

Veterans Administration, $1.5 billion - These emergency funds were included for the Veterans Administration to provide necessary services to our troops returning from Iraq. Senator Shelby said, “I am extremely pleased that this bill includes $1.5 billion in funds for the Veterans Administration. We must honor the commitments of those who have served our nation, and these funds are critical to that goal.”

Coosa Valley Water Supply District, $800,000 - These funds will provide a reliable, potable water source which will serve St. Clair and Talladega Counties. Senator Shelby said, “I believe it is critically important that our communities have access to a safe and reliable source of drinking water. This project will also encourage economic growth is this area of the state.”

City of York, $700,000 - These funds will allow the City of York to make necessary sewer improvements for their community. Senator Shelby said, “I was pleased to support this project, and I believe that improvements to the community’s sewer system will lead to further economic growth in and around York.”

Tuskegee Airmen National Historic Site, $6,767,000 - These funds will be used for preservation and rehabilitation needs at the Tuskegee Airmen National Historic Site at Moton Airfield. Senator Shelby said, “The Tuskegee Airmen put their love of country above all else to fight for their nation, and we must continue to invest in this historic site that recognizes their contributions.”

Cahaba National Wildlife Refuge, $500,000 - The Cahaba River National Wildlife Refuge was established in the 106th Congress, and the land that it encompasses is home to 32 animals and plants protected under the Endangered Species Act. These funds will allow for the acquisition of 264 acres within the Refuge in Bibb County. Senator Shelby said, “I am pleased that the Senate approved these funds for the Cahaba River National Wildlife Refuge. This environmentally-diverse, pristine land must be protected for future generations to enjoy.” Center for Estuarine Research at the University of South Alabama, $500,000 - Senator Shelby said, “I am pleased to announce this funding for research activities that the Center conducts on the ecology of coastal lands and seascapes. This funding will allow the University of South Alabama to continue the vital ecological research that it is conducting in the Gulf Coast and Mobile Bay areas. The knowledge gained from this research provides important scientific insights that can be used to preserve and protect coastal plant and wildlife.”

Alabama National Forest, $500,000 - This funding will assist in the purchase of land, from willing sellers only, within the boundaries of Alabama's National Forests. The National Forests in Alabama represent the largest area of publicly owned land in Alabama, covering approximately 665,661 acres. Senator Shelby said, “This year's funding will aid in the continued protection and preservation of our wildlife and natural resources in this area.”

Alabama Department of Environmental Management, $500,000 - Senator Shelby said, “This funding will allow the Alabama Department of Environmental Management to conduct field training for Alabama water and wastewater operators across the state.”

National Rural Water Association (NRWA), $11 million - Senator Shelby said, “This includes $9 million to assist rural water technical assistance activities and groundwater protection across the nation, and an additional $2 million to assist small water systems to conduct vulnerability assessments.”

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