Udall Talks LANL Cleanup & Water Conference Report

WASHINGTON, D.C. – On his weekly radio press conference call Tuesday, U.S. Sen. Tom Udall discussed efforts to secure critical funding for cleanup at Los Alamos National Laboratory through DOE and NNSA reprogramming.
Udall also recapped last week’s water conference report release.
Below are highlights from Udall’s remarks:
0:00 –Udall discusses last week’s release of policy recommendations following July’s 37th Annual New Mexico WRRI Water Conference, entitled “Hard Choices: Adapting Policy and Management to Water Scarcity.” Udall cohosted the event, and water policy experts and community members helped compile a report in the months following that seeks to identify shared solutions to New Mexico’s water challenges.
1:32 – “The conference title said it all: We face hard choices. One of those choices will be between conflict and cooperation. We share these waters, whether we like it or not. And we can only adapt to the conditions we face if we work together. We can’t control the weather, but we can — and we must — improve our response to it.
“You can find our water conference report on my website at www.tomudall.senate.gov. I encourage you to take a look, and I welcome comments on this paper. I believe that we can meet the challenges ahead, and I look forward to continuing this conversation.”
2:12 – Udall mentions this morning’s introduction of Ambassador Deborah Jones of Santa Fe to the Senate Foreign Relations Committee as President Obama’s nominee to be U.S. Ambassador to Libya.
3:01 – “I look forward to supporting such a well-qualified candidate, and our state is proud to add her to the long list of distinguished ambassadors who have called New Mexico home.”
3:12 – Udall highlights his work with Sen. Heinrich and Rep. Luján to secure critical funding for transuranic waste removal at LANL. The delegation has worked to get recent funding cuts restored through the reprogramming of federal accounts. Yesterday they announced DOE has responded to their request and are recommending a reprograming of $19 million. Next, the House and Senate Committees on Appropriations and Armed Services must sign off on the reprogramming.
4:49 –“I sit on the Appropriations Committee, and I hope we can finalize the $19 million dollar reprogramming soon. But that’s not all. In addition to the $19 million from DOE, we are also asking for an additional $21 million to be reprogrammed from the NNSA.
“The State and Feds are under legal obligation to make sure the nuclear waste at LANL is cleaned up, and I’m committed to seeing that effort through. Reprogramming is no easy task, but we’ve made a lot of progress. I’ll keep you posted on our efforts.”
5:26 –Udall answers additional questions on sequestration and Guantanamo Bay.

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