Jun 29 2006

SHELBY ANNOUNCES FUNDING FOR ALABAMA ENERGY AND WATER PROJECTS

Seante Appropriations Committee Passes Energy & Water Appropriations Bill

U.S. Senator Richard C. Shelby (R-Ala.), a member of the Senate Appropriations Committee, today announced funding for several Alabama projects included in the fiscal year 2007 Energy and Water Appropriations bill. This legislation, which was approved by the Senate Appropriations Committee today, will now go to the Senate floor for consideration.

Senator Shelby said, "I am pleased to announce funding for many important energy and water projects across Alabama. This legislation reflects our commitment to protecting the waterways and energy resources in Alabama and throughout the country."

Tuscaloosa Army Corps of Engineers Office Relocation - $5 Million

The relocation of the Tuscaloosa Army Corps of Engineers Program Office will allow the City of Tuscaloosa to move forward with its ongoing development of a riverwalk. The Corps of Engineers currently occupies waterfront property vital to the City's riverwalk project that includes public parks and recreation areas, and will add to the larger downtown revitalization plan. Additionally, relocation of the current facility will allow the Corps to consolidate offices, improve security, separate Government Owned Contractor Operated facilities from Government offices, and upgrade maintenance facilities.

Senator Shelby said, "I am pleased that the Committee continued funding of this important project for the Corps of Engineers and downtown Tuscaloosa. These funds will compliment the City's efforts to revitalize downtown and ensure long-term, economic growth in the area. I share the belief of City leaders, residents, and business-owners that the completion of these important development projects is the key to a brighter future for Tuscaloosa."

Auburn University Alternative Fuel Source Study of Cement Kilns - $1 Million

Senator Shelby said, "In coordination with LaFarge North America, Auburn University's laboratories will be used to study the conversion of alternate fuel sources for cement production It is critical that our scientists work to decrease the nation’s dependence on foreign fuel sources. This project is a perfect example of the private sector working with a public university to drive innovation in the industry."

University of Alabama at Birmingham (UAB) PET Brain Imaging System - $1 Million

Senator Shelby said, "These funds are essential to UAB’s Department of Neurology as they will allow UAB to purchase a cyclotron for a Positron Emission Tomography (PET) brain imaging system. The PET system, which provides scientists with a three-dimensional image or map of the brain, will work in coordination with UAB’s already state-of-the-art equipment in their Neurology Department.”

Integrated Distribution Management System in Alabama - $1 Million

Senator Shelby said, “The IDMS will integrate information systems that operate an electric distribution system, providing a significant increase in reliability. In addition, the system will reduce power losses inherent in the system. This funding is important in light of ongoing efforts to ensure reliability across the power grill and I am pleased the Committee agreed to continue funding for this project.”

Appalachian Regional Commission ? $65.472 Million

Senator Shelby said, "The ARC is an important economic driver in Alabama and this funding will allow the Appalachian Regional Commission to continue their efforts. This economic development and increased infrastructure ARC brings to this region of the United States."

Delta Regional Authority ? $12 Million

Senator Shelby said, "The Delta Regional Authority serves an eight state region of the country, including 20 of Alabama’s most impoverished counties, eligible for additional transportation and infrastructure funding, as well as funds for economic development and skills training. This funding will allow the DRA to continue its efforts to spur economic development throughout these underserved areas of Alabama."

WATERWAY PROJECTS

The legislation provides funds for a number of Alabama waterway projects. Senator Shelby said, "Alabama's waterways are an important part of our national inland waterway transportation system, while serving as an economic necessity for businesses in Alabama and across the nation. Numerous industries depend on an efficient waterway infrastructure to transport goods, and adequate funding is critical in order to avoid interruptions to the river flow traffic."

The bill has provided funding for a number of Army Corps of Engineers projects in Alabama. These funds have been provided for the Corps' ongoing operation and maintenance activities on the waterways listed below:

Alabama - Coosa River - $1.86 Million

Alabama- Coosa Comprehensive Water Study, AL - $180,000

Apalachicola, Chattahoochee and Flint Rivers - $1.455 Million

Black Warrior-Tombigbee Waterway - $21.093 Million

Gulf Intercoastal Waterway - $5.51 Million

Inspection of Completed Works, AL - $55,000

Jim Woodruff Lock and Dam - $7.896 Million

Millers Ferry Lock and Dam, William Bill Dannelly Lake - $5.781 Million

Mobile Harbor - $19.6 Million

Project Condition Surveys, AL - $100,000

Robert F. Henry Lock and Dam - $6.122 Million

Scheduling Reservoir Operations, AL - $94,000

Tennessee River O & M - $19.306 Million

Tennessee - Tombigbee Waterway - $28.5 Million

Tennessee Tombigbee Wildlife Mitigation Payments - $2 Million

Walter F. George Lock and Dam - $7.791 Million

These funds have been provided to the Corps for construction and major rehabilitation projects on the following waterways:

Chickamauga Lock, TN - $27 Million

Kentucky Lock and Dam, KY - $20 Million

Walter F. George Power Plant Replacement - $5 Million

Mobile Harbor - $2.069 Million