These are Congressman David E. Bonior's remarks and a newswire article regarding yesterday's introduction of the 2000 Salmon Recovery Planning Act:
"I want to thank Representatives McDermott and Petri for their leadership on this important issue. We have a chance to do this right. We can protect the threatened Snake River salmon and ensure that families in Washington, Oregon and Idaho don't incur economic hardships. The way to do that is to bring all of the parties to the table ... the environmental community ... the Native tribes in the region ... the fishermen, anglers and sportsmen ... the farmers ... the longshoremen and barge pilots ... the railroads ... and the families who live in the communities along the river. Today, there are no wolverines in Michigan ... prior generations allowed fur traders to wipe them out. Nor are there any Graylings ... loggers removed so many trees at the turn of the century that our lakes and rivers became too warm for the fish to survive. Let's not see the day when there are no salmon in the Pacific Northwest ... let's do the proper planning to make sure we protect both the salmon and the families who live in the region ... let's follow the principals laid out in the McDerrmott / Petri legislation."
U.S. Newswire, July 19,
Statement by Coordinator of Snake River Campaign at Taxpayers for Common Sense on the Introduction of the Salmon Planning Act
The following is a written statement of Autumn Hanna, coordinator of Snake River Campaign at Taxpayers for Common Sense on the introduction of the Salmon Planning Act:
Taxpayers for Common Sense applauds Representative Jim McDermott (D-WA) for introducing the Salmon Planning Act of 2001 today. Rep. McDermott, along with Reps. Tom Petri (R-WI), Jim Leach (R-IA), David Bonior (D-MI) and fourteen others are leading the way to ensure that we are ready to remove the four dams on the Lower Snake river if the current billion dollar techno-fixes fail to save salmon from threatened extinction.
This bill is a win for the taxpayer. Fish recovery schemes such as barging and trucking have proven to be expensive failures. Engaging in long-range planning on the lower Snake River is just plain, fiscally responsible.
Washington has been selling the taxpayer down the river. This bill provides a plan to escape this river of fiscal ruin.
It seems the federal government's response to the expensive threat of extinction is to throw buckets of money at half-baked solutions like barging and trucking of salmon. This legislation recognizes the need to be prepared if we eventually decide to partially remove the four dams.
This legislation is responsible and simply makes sense. It doesn't order the dams removed. But it does recognize that if we get to the point where removal is necessary to avoid the high taxpayer cost of extinction, we better be prepared. This legislation sets up a common sense process to figure out what we would need to do to reduce the impact to the local economies and people who benefit and use the four dams today.