4:41 PM EDT

Rodney Frelinghuysen, R-NJ 11th

Mr. FRELINGHUYSEN. Mr. Chairman, I reserve a point of order on the gentlewoman's amendment.

The Acting CHAIR. A point of order is reserved.

Pursuant to the order of the House of today, the gentlewoman from California (Ms. Eshoo) and a Member opposed each will control 5 minutes.

The Chair recognizes the gentlewoman from California.

4:41 PM EDT

Doc Hastings, R-WA 4th

Mr. HASTINGS of Washington. I yield myself as much time as I may consume.

Mr. Chairman, in these tight budget times, it is more important than ever that the Federal Government focus its funding on the most essential and core functions. The Federal Government, however, should not subsidize private companies' business decisions, particularly when that business decision involves tearing out a 14 megawatt hydropower dam that has served two rural counties in my district.

The Condit Dam, a privately owned and operated hydropower-producing dam located in my district, was constructed in 1913 on the White Salmon River, which is a tributary of the Columbia River. Since 1947, the Condit Dam has been owned and operated by PacifiCorp and has held a license with the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission.

Over the past 20 years, rather than agree to the rigorous and costly measures associated with the FERC relicensing process, PacifiCorp opted to pursue actions to surrender its license to operate the dam and now wants to remove that dam at its own cost. This amendment will ensure that no Federal tax dollars will be used by the Corps of Engineers to remove or mitigate for the removal of the Condit Dam.

Recently, PacifiCorp representatives communicated to my office that they acknowledge that PacifiCorp itself, and not the Corps, is responsible for all impacts that removing this dam might cause to the Federal Columbia River navigation channel. My amendment simply ensures that the Federal taxpayers do not get left holding the bag for a private company's actions that could cost this private company, by their own admission, up to $32 million.

Having said that, I do want to say this, Mr. Chairman. While I give tacit approval to a dam being removed in the Northwest--it's a private decision by a private company--I want to reiterate and continue my opposition to any attempt to remove any of the Federal dams along the Columbia or Snake River. This is a private company making their decision, and they should pay for it; and that's what this amendment attempts to address.

4:43 PM EDT

Doc Hastings, R-WA 4th

Mr. HASTINGS of Washington. I thank the gentleman very much.

With that concurrence on the other side, I yield back the balance of my time and urge adoption of the amendment.

The Acting CHAIR. The question is on the amendment offered by the gentleman from Washington (Mr. Hastings).

The amendment was agreed to.