Saturday, July 18, 2009

Stupak secures $30.8 million for Northern Michigan energy, water projects

WASHINGTON -- U.S. Congressman Bart Stupak (D-Menominee) voted Friday, July 17, in support of the Fiscal Year 2010 Energy and Water Appropriations bill, which includes $30.8 million for Northern Michigan projects. H.R. 3183 provides funding for the U.S. Department of Energy, Army Corps of Engineers and related federal agencies. The bill passed the U.S. House of Representatives by a vote of 320 to 97 and now awaits consideration in the U.S. Senate.

"The Fiscal Year 2010 Energy and Water bill makes a significant investment in Northern Michigan, particularly the infrastructure and maintenance needs of our navigable waterways," Stupak said. "The First Congressional District touches three of the five Great Lakes and is nearly completely surrounded by water. It is fitting that the bulk of water infrastructure spending for Michigan be directed to Northern Michigan and I was pleased to help provide this critical investment."

Northern Michigan Projects

$23,010,000 for the Corps of Engineers to operate and maintain the Soo Locks. Funding will be used to improve the efficiency of the locks and reduce the risks of downtime and vessel delays. Work will focus on the Poe and MacArthur locks, as well as other infrastructure at the facility.

$1,122,000 for Ontonagon Harbor. Funding will be used for pier repairs and dredging of the harbor.

$335,000 for Presque Isle Harbor. Funding will be used to maintain the harbor’s navigational structure and mapping of the channel.

$233,000 for Menominee Harbor. Funding will be used to maintain the harbor’s navigational structure.

$203,000 for Charlevoix Harbor. Funding will be used to remove obstructions in the harbor and map the channel. Sand blowing over the structures causes sediment build-up that requires annual clearing.

$37,000 for the Keweenaw Waterway. Funding will be used for environmental stewardship activities and for coordinating structural repairs.

Although a dollar amount is not specified, the bill also directs the Corps of Engineers to perform repairs to the Mackinac Island Harbor breakwater.

$300,000 for energy efficiency and weatherization upgrades at Gogebic Community College. Funding will be used to replace hot water heaters with energy-efficient models, install energy recovery ventilators on furnaces, modernize air handling units, replace boilers and weatherize the main academic building with energy-efficient windows.

$3 million for the Consortium for Plant Biotechnology Research (CPBR) -- a non-profit corporation whose membership includes 43 leading U.S. research universities, including Michigan State University and Michigan Technological University. The consortium’s research produces technological innovations for higher quality crops and cropping practices, improved biomass energy production, commercially valuable alternative co-products, objective information on the relationship between genetically engineered plants and the environment, prevention/remediation of hazardous wastes and reduction of greenhouse gas emissions.

$2,612,000 for surveillance of Michigan’s northern boundary waters, including monitoring of water levels and other coordinated activities with the International Joint Commission (IJC).

Click here for an MP3 radio actuality with Congressman Stupak's comments on this bill.

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