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We were sent this a draft of the proposed “Sense of Congress” Resolution which was circulated to Klamath Restoration Agreement  member organizations and presented to members of Congress. We heard it did not pass. 10/8/08. It was sent as confidential. Why did the groups hide this from their constituents/communities? Why the continued secrecy?


Privileged; Subject to Confidentiality Agreement
Draft Sept. 9, 2008

Concurrent Resolution Expressing the Sense of Congress regarding the proposed Klamath Basin Restoration Agreement

Whereas the Klamath River Basin in south-central Oregon and northwestern California is a region rich in natural and cultural resource heritage;

Whereas fish and other natural resources of the Klamath River Basin are central to the well-being of resident Indian Tribes;

Whereas fish of the Klamath River Basin also support commercial and recreational fisheries;

Whereas the Klamath River Basin is home to family farming and ranching operations and related communities;

Whereas the Klamath River Basin supports substantial waterfowl and wildlife resources, on both private and public land including National Wildlife Refuges;

Whereas Federal Energy Regulatory Commission Project 2082 consists of various dams and appurtenant facilities for generation of hydroelectric power and is currently under consideration for relicensing;

Whereas the Klamath River Basin has experienced intense and divisive conflict concerning issues of water allocation, fisheries, irrigation, and wildlife, which has been detrimental and costly to the communities of the Basin and the Nation and such conflict is likely to continue and perhaps worsen absent effective settlement;

Whereas a diverse group of stakeholders, with support and assistance of Federal and state agencies, has produced a proposed Klamath Basin Restoration Agreement for the Sustainability of Public and Trust Resources and Affected Communities;

Whereas State and Federal agencies, the owner of Project 2082, and other diverse stakeholders, have been engaged in fruitful discussions related to alternatives to relicensing the existing current hydroelectric facilities;

Whereas the proposed Klamath Basin Restoration Agreement
- is intended to address longstanding disputes regarding water use and allocation and numerous resource and other conflicts that have plagued the Klamath River Basin;
- is intended to protect the sustainability of agricultural uses and communities along with public and trust resources;
- is intended, consistent with National policy with respect to Native American tribes, to provide Tribes with both sustainable natural resources and sustainable communities;
- includes comprehensive and interrelated programs, commitments, and compromises to realize the objectives of the Agreement and provide collaboration in future implementation of the Agreement;
- including its provisions related to Project 2082, represents a carefully constructed and delicate balancing of interests which must be considered as a whole; and
- presents an unparalleled opportunity to promote and bring about a positive future for the communities and resources of the Klamath Basin and serve National interests:

Now, therefore, be it resolved by the House of Representatives (the Senate concurring), that it is the sense of Congress that—

(1) Congress commends the tireless effort, commitment, and spirit of cooperation and compromise of the United States Government, Tribal Governments, governments of the States of Oregon and California, local governments, and irrigation, conservation, and fisheries interests in the production of the proposed Klamath Basin Restoration Agreement : and encourages the continuation and completion of that effort;

(2) Congress commends the intensive efforts of all parties engaged in discussions related to alternatives to the relicensing of the existing hydroelectric facilities included in Project 2082 and urges the parties to find solutions that will be in the interest of all parties;

(3) Actions of all Federal Departments and Agencies, prior to completion of the agreements described in (1) – (2) above, should be consistent with the goals of maintaining the collaborative environment and atmosphere which led to the development of the proposed Klamath Basin Restoration Agreement and have characterized relicensing discussions; and

(4) Congress encourages the Secretaries of the Interior, Commerce, and Agriculture, and other agencies, departments, and instrumentalities of the United States, to continue to use existing authorities to preserve the ability to fully implement the proposed Klamath Basin Restoration Agreement.

Passed the House of Representatives September xx, 2008.

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