ALERT: Asian Carp and Congress
Written by GLFC   
Thursday, 30 March 2006 09:36

We need ACTION NOW!

Two species of Asian carp—the silver and the bighead—threaten entry and adverse ecological and resource impacts to the Great Lakes. A four-year old electric barrier (Barrier I) in the Chicago Sanitary and Ship (San-Ship) Canal is our only line of defense and it is failing. The carp are currently only about 20 miles below the barrier, 50 miles from Lake Michigan.

A second, permanent barrier (Barrier II) is under construction. The first phase is expected to be operational early this summer. Cost estimates for the second phase of Barrier II suggest additional funding may be required to complete the project.

A second, permanent barrier (Barrier II) is under construction. The first phase is expected to be operational early this summer. Cost estimates for the second phase of Barrier II suggest additional funding may be required to complete the project.

Once construction of Barrier II is complete, Illinois will be responsible for operation and maintenance of this barrier. The ability of Illinois to accommodate the projected $250,000 annual cost is in question. The regional benefits dictate that this should be a federal project.

Congress provided NO funding in fiscal year 2006 to operate either barrier I or barrier II. Further, once barrier II is complete, the COE authority to operate Barrier I ends and it will be shut down. This must not be allowed to happen; both barriers are needed to provide a strong line of defense.

ACTION NEEDED

Congress must take immediate action to protect the Great Lakes from Asian carp.

Congress must authorize the COE to operate barrier I indefinitely.At the first possible opportunity, Congress should authorize the full federal operation of barriers I and II. The authorization can be included in any legislation that will pass Congress immediately, whether that legislation is an authorization bill or an appropriations bill.

At the first possible opportunity, Congress should authorize the full federal operation of barriers I and II. The authorization can be included in legislation that will pass Congress , whether that legislation is an authorization bill or an appropriations bill.

Congress should provide the funds necessary to complete both phases of barrier II and to re-build barrier I. It is essential that $5.7 million is needed for these activities.

Congress should provide the funds necessary to complete both phases of barrier II and to re-build barrier I. It is essential that $5.7 million is needed for these activities.

Congress should provide full funding of at least $1.0 million annually to operate and maintain barriers I and II at federal expense.

Congress should provide full funding of at least $1.0 million annually to operate and maintain barriers I and II at federal expense.

HOW YOU CAN HELP

Call or fax your Representative and Senators and tell them to take action TODAY to address the Asian carp problem. If you do not know who your Representative is, visit www.house.gov and enter your zip code at the top of the page (under "find your representative"). You may also call 202-224-3121 and ask to be connected to your Representative’s or Senator’s office.

A list of some key Representatives and Senators is below, though you should contact your own members as well.

SENATE

Sen. Mike DeWine (OH), Chair, Great Lakes Task Force, 140 Russell, Attn: Paul Palagyi

Sen. Carl Levin (MI), Chair, Great Lakes Task Force, 269 Russell, Attn: Joy Mulinex

Sen. Durbin (IL), Member, Committee on Appropriations, 332 Dirksen, Attn: Jessica Lenard

Sen. Kit Bond (MO), Member, Appropriations Subcommittee on Energy and Water AND Chair, Subcommittee on Transportation and Infrastructure (WRDA subcommittee), 410 Dirksen

HOUSE

Rep. David Hobson (OH), Chair, Appropriations Subcommittee on Energy and Water, 2362-B Rayburn, Attention: Kenny Kraft

Rep. Peter Visclosky (IN), Ranking Member, Appropriations Sub. on Energy and Water, 2256 Rayburn, Attention: Pedr Maarbjerg

Rep. Judy Biggert (IL), dispersal barrier is in her district and she has been excellent on this issue—1317 Longworth, Attention: Paul Doucette

Rep. Mark Kirk (IL), Chair, Great Lakes Task Force, 1717 Longworth, Attention: Patrick Magnusen

Rep. John Dingell (MI), Chair, Great Lakes Task Force, 2328 Rayburn, Attn: Katie Murtha

Rep. David Obey (WI), Ranking Member, Committee on Appropriations, 2314 Rayburn, Attn: Will Painter

Rep. Rahm Emmanuel (IL), Interested in this issue, 1319 Longworth, Attn: Jon Hoganson

The following members are on authorizing committees who are involved in this issue.

SENATE

Great Lakes Members, Environment and Public Works Committee

Republicans

Sen. George Voinovich (OH)—415 Hart, Attention: Brian Mormino

Sen. James Inhofe (OK)—410 Dirksen, Chair, full committee

Democrats

Sen. Barack Obama (IL)—713 Hart, Attention: Todd Atkinson

Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton (NY)—476 Russell, Attention: Dan Utech

Sen. James Jeffords (VT)—Ranking member, full committee, 410 Dirksen

HOUSE

Great Lakes Members, Committee on Transportation and Infrastructure

*=members, Subcommittee on Water Resources and Environment

Republicans

Rep. Thomas Petri (WI)—2462 Rayburn

Rep. Sherwood Boehlert (NY)*—2246 Rayburn

Rep. Peter Hoekstra (MI)—2234 Rayburn, Attention: Justin Woormeester

Rep. Vernon Ehlers (MI)*—1714 Longworth, Attention: Mart Reiffer

Rep. Steven LaTourette (OH)*—2453 Rayburn

Rep. John Duncan (TN)—Chair Water Resources Subcommittee, B-376 Rayburn

Rep. Don Young (AK)—Chair, full committee—2165 Rayburn

Democrats

Rep. James Oberstar (MN)—Ranking member, full committee. B-375 Rayburn, Attention: Ken Kopocis

Rep. Jerry Costello (IL)*—2269 Rayburn

Rep. Brian Higgins (NY)*—431 Cannon

Rep. Eddie Bernice Johnson (TX)*—Ranking member, Water Resources and Env. Sub, B-375 Rayburn

 

 

 
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