2:51 PM EDT
Greg Walden, R-OR 2nd

Mr. WALDEN of Oregon. Madam Speaker, I yield myself such time as I may consume.

Madam Speaker, S. 986 was introduced by Senator REID of Nevada and a companion bill was introduced by our friend and colleague, the gentleman from Nevada (Mr. GIBBONS) on May 5 of 1999.

This legislation provides for the Southern Nevada Water Authority to accept responsibility for administration, operation and maintenance of the Griffith Project and to pay the net present value of the remaining repayment obligation. In addition, the bill directs the Secretary to convey and assign to the authority all right, title and interest of the United States in and to the Griffith Project. [Page: H5679]

The Griffith Project forms an integral part of a much larger water delivery system built separately by the Southern Nevada Water Authority and its constituent agencies. It consists of the intake facilities, pumping plants, et cetera required to provide water from Lake Meade for distribution.

Madam Speaker, I reserve the balance of my time.

2:51 PM EDT
Greg Walden, R-OR 2nd

Mr. WALDEN of Oregon. Madam Speaker, I yield myself such time as I may consume.

Madam Speaker, S. 986 was introduced by Senator REID of Nevada and a companion bill was introduced by our friend and colleague, the gentleman from Nevada (Mr. GIBBONS) on May 5 of 1999.

This legislation provides for the Southern Nevada Water Authority to accept responsibility for administration, operation and maintenance of the Griffith Project and to pay the net present value of the remaining repayment obligation. In addition, the bill directs the Secretary to convey and assign to the authority all right, title and interest of the United States in and to the Griffith Project. [Page: H5679]

The Griffith Project forms an integral part of a much larger water delivery system built separately by the Southern Nevada Water Authority and its constituent agencies. It consists of the intake facilities, pumping plants, et cetera required to provide water from Lake Meade for distribution.

Madam Speaker, I reserve the balance of my time.

2:52 PM EDT
Eni Faleomavaega, D-AS

Mr. FALEOMAVAEGA. Madam Speaker, I fully support the passage of S. 986. I note that the Department of the Interior has raised concerns regarding the effect of the bill on the Lake Meade National Recreation area. It is my understanding that the rights of way provisions in S. 986, while generous, are intended to provide the Southern Nevada Water Authority with reasonable access to project facilities across Federal lands.

The Secretary of the Interior has responsibility for protecting and managing the Lake Mead National Recreation area, and I would expect the Secretary's participation in negotiations involving rights of way over Federal lands which provide ample opportunities to ensure that those resources are fully protected.

Madam Speaker, I would like to say that I want to commend the gentleman from Nevada (Mr. GIBBONS), my good friend, and the good senator from Nevada for his bipartisan support of this legislation, and I urge my colleagues to support this bill.

Madam Speaker, I reserve the balance of my time.

2:52 PM EDT
Eni Faleomavaega, D-AS

Mr. FALEOMAVAEGA. Madam Speaker, I fully support the passage of S. 986. I note that the Department of the Interior has raised concerns regarding the effect of the bill on the Lake Meade National Recreation area. It is my understanding that the rights of way provisions in S. 986, while generous, are intended to provide the Southern Nevada Water Authority with reasonable access to project facilities across Federal lands.

The Secretary of the Interior has responsibility for protecting and managing the Lake Mead National Recreation area, and I would expect the Secretary's participation in negotiations involving rights of way over Federal lands which provide ample opportunities to ensure that those resources are fully protected.

Madam Speaker, I would like to say that I want to commend the gentleman from Nevada (Mr. GIBBONS), my good friend, and the good senator from Nevada for his bipartisan support of this legislation, and I urge my colleagues to support this bill.

Madam Speaker, I reserve the balance of my time.