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GLIN==> Northeast-Midwest Weekly Update -- 11 September 2000



HEADLINES:

* Briefing:  Energy Prices
* Letter:  Trade Adjustment Assistance
* Report:  Sprawl and Smart Growth
* Letter:  High Fuel Prices and LIHEAP
* Letter:  Water Monitoring
* Briefing:  BEACH Bill


BRIEFING:  ENERGY PRICES
------------------------
      The Northeast-Midwest Congressional and Senate Coalitions on
Wednesday, September 13, will host a briefing by the Department
of Energy and the Energy Information Administration on projected
energy prices for the coming winter, the state of the regional
heating oil reserve, and this past weekend's OPEC meeting.  As
oil prices hit a ten-year high this week, some analysts predict
heating oil costs this winter will be 30 percent above last
year's level.  The briefing  will address cost and inventory
projections, the effect on fuel prices of OPEC decisions, and the
new Northeast Heating Oil Reserve.

      The September 13 briefing will begin at 2:00 pm in room 2363
of the Rayburn House Office Building.

      CONTACT:  Tim Daniels at the Northeast-Midwest Congressional
Coalition (226-8636).


LETTER:  TRADE ADJUSTMENT ASSISTANCE
------------------------------------
      Reps. Amo Houghton (R-NY), Richard Neal (D-MA), Phil English
(R-PA), and Charles Gonzalez (D-TX) are circulating a letter
asking House appropriators to accept the Senate's higher funding
level for the Trade Adjustment Assistance (TAA) program.  The
Senate Commerce-Justice-State Appropriations bill provides $24
million, while the House offers $10.5 million.

      The seven TAA centers in the Northeast and Midwest have
assisted small and mid-sized manufacturing firms and agricultural
businesses experiencing sales and job losses due to imports.
Senator Arlen Specter (R-PA) is leading a Senate letter to
appropriation conferees in support of the Senate-provided level.
The deadline for signatures on the House letter is Tuesday,
September 12.

      CONTACT:  Tim Daniels at the Northeast-Midwest Congressional
Coalition (226-8636).


REPORT:  SPRAWL AND SMART GROWTH
--------------------------------
      The Senate Smart Growth Task Force last week released a new
General Accounting Office (GAO) report entitled Local Growth
Issues -- Federal Opportunities and Challenges.  The report and
the survey results can be found on GAO's web site at:

http://www.gao.gov/new.items/rc00178.pdf
http://www.gao.gov/special.pubs/lgi/

      CONTACT:  Cameron Taylor with the Northeast-Midwest Senate
Coalition (224-0606).


LETTER:  HIGH FUEL PRICES AND LIHEAP
------------------------------------
      The Northeast-Midwest Senate Coalition last week sent a
letter to President Clinton asking for an early release of
contingency funding from the Low Income Home Energy Assistance
Program (LIHEAP).  The effort was led by Sens. Joseph Lieberman
(D-CT) and Jim Jeffords (R-VT).

      The letter cited the rise in heating fuel prices, the
disproportionate energy cost burden on low income households, and
the underfunding of the LIHEAP program to argue for an early
release of contingency funding.  A copy of the letter can be
found on http://www.nemw.org/liheapltr.pdf.

      CONTACT:  Cameron Taylor at the Northeast-Midwest Senate
Coalition (224-0606).


LETTER:  WATER MONITORING
-------------------------
      Senators Daniel Patrick Moynihan (D-NY), Jim Jeffords
(R-VT), Charles Schumer (D-NY), and Patrick Leahy (D-VT) last
week sent a letter to appropriators in support of the Temporally
Integrated Monitoring of Ecosystems/Long Term Monitoring Network
(TIME/LTM), a monitoring program that measures water chemistry in
lakes and streams throughout the Northeast.  The collected data
are critical to understanding the complex nature of acid rain and
its effects on ecosystems, enabling researchers to evaluate the
effectiveness of our nation's current clean air programs and to
develop common sense legislative solutions in the future.  The
senators are urging a funding floor of at least $2 million for
the TIME/LTM network in the fiscal 2001 VA-HUD Appropriations
bill.

      CONTACT:  Matt Little with Senator Moynihan (224-4451).


BRIEFING:  BEACH BILL
---------------------
      The Great Lakes Task Forces on Tuesday, September 12, will
host a briefing on the significance of the Beaches Environmental,
Assessment, and Coastal Health Act (S. 522 and H.R. 999) to the
Great Lakes region.  The so-called BEACH bill aims to protect
beach goers from disease-causing pathogens by establishing a
national baseline for beach water quality and by creating grants
for states to develop and implement water quality monitoring and
public notification programs.

      The September 12 briefing will begin at 2:00 pm in room SC-6
of the U.S. Capitol; speakers will include representatives of
American Oceans Campaign, Surfrider Foundation, and Coastal
States Organization.  A separate briefing on the bill by staff of
the Senate Environment and Public Works committee will begin on
Monday, September 11, at 3:00 pm in room 406 of the Dirksen
Senate Office Building.

      CONTACT:  Rochelle Sturtevant of the Great Lakes Task Force
(224-1211).

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