I want to thank US Representatives Cathy McMorris Rodgers, Dan Newhouse, Kurt Schrader and others for introducing bipartisan HR3144 to keep the Obama-era 2014 Biological Opinion in place for the Federal Columbia River Power System until 2022. This is an important piece of legislation that builds on improvements at federal dams on the Columbia and Snake Rivers, rehabilitation of habitat, and other actions that are benefiting federally protected salmon and steelhead.
To that, I must express my disappointment with a letter submitted to leaders in the House and Senate opposing HR3144 signed by Washington Senator Murray and Representatives Smith and Jayapal. HR3144 legislation doesn’t circumvent the NEPA process. It lets the process play out as intended and limits activist US District Court Judge Simon from issuing rulings that amount to a grand experiment with our hydro system and disrupts an agreement with a track record of working, according to NOAA.
At a time when the current administration is proposing privatization of the Bonneville Power Administration, now is the time our Northwest delegation come together as they historical have on these issues and support our clean, cheap electricity generated by the Columbia and Snake River System.
Please see the copy of the letter from Murray below. I hope this action by Sen. Murray is just an effort to appease her liberal base, and this letter is as far as she intends on going to help remove the Lower Snake River dams.