U.S. Senate Passes Lake Tahoe Restoration Act - KTVN Channel 2 - Reno Tahoe Sparks News, Weather, Video

U.S. Senate Passes Lake Tahoe Restoration Act

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The US Senate has passed its version of the Water Resources Development Act in a package that includes the Lake Tahoe Restoration Act of 2015 (S.1724). 

The following is a statement by League to Save Lake Tahoe Executive Director Darcie Goodman Collins, PhD: 

“It’s fantastic news that the full U.S. Senate today passed the Lake Tahoe Restoration Act, intact with the content we supported. We are grateful for the hard work of our Senate delegation under the sponsorship of Senator Dean Heller, supported by his colleagues Senators Harry Reid, Dianne Feinstein, and Barbara Boxer.

This is a critical step for this important piece of legislation, which we have been working on for years. Now we need the U.S. House of Representative to pass a similar version of the water act so that these vital measures to protect Lake Tahoe can advance.”

Nevada Senator Harry Reid released the following statement after the Senate passed the Lake Tahoe Restoration Act of 2015, which was included in the underlying text of the Water Resources Development Act. The legislation authorizes $415 million over 10 years for forest fuels management, environmental and watershed restoration, stormwater management and other projects. It now moves to the House of Representatives. 

“The Lake Tahoe Restoration Act highlights our commitment to protecting this unique ecosystem and the economy that depends upon the lake’s clarity. Its passage is an important step, but it is meaningless unless Republicans are willing to step up and get it through the House of Representatives and onto the president’s desk,” said Senator Reid. “Last month, at my invitation, President Obama visited Lake Tahoe for the very first time to speak at the 20th anniversary of the Lake Tahoe Summit. At that event the federal government, the states of Nevada and California, local businesses, residents and philanthropists all rededicated ourselves to the work of protecting this unique and wonderful lake.  As the entire world saw last month, the beauty of Lake Tahoe is unparalleled. We must do everything we can to keep it that way.”

Sponsored by Senator Reid, California Senators Dianne Feinstein and Barbara Boxer and Nevada Senator Dean Heller, the legislation is designed to continue the ongoing effort to protect Lake Tahoe and the Tahoe Basin from invasive species and devastating wildfires, while restoring Lake Tahoe’s water clarity and protecting threatened species and wildlands. Reid organized the first Lake Tahoe Summit in 1997, helped pass the Lake Tahoe Restoration Act of 2000 and has led efforts to deliver hundreds of millions of dollars to the Lake Tahoe Basin for restoration and forest work. Senator Reid initiated and led the effort to include the Lake Tahoe Restoration Act in the Water Resources Development Act. 

U.S. Senator Dean Heller (R-NV) issued the following statement today after the Lake Tahoe Restoration Act passed the Senate as part of the Water Resources Development Act of 2016 (WRDA). This bipartisan legislation provides federal, state, and local partners important tools to reduce wildfire threats, improve water clarity, jumpstart innovative infrastructure projects, and combat invasive species. 

“In Nevada, we know how lucky we are to possess one of America’s most pristine natural treasures: Lake Tahoe. And it is imperative Lake Tahoe’s value is reflected in the way our nation prioritizes its own needs. That’s why I’m proud to see this legislation, the Lake Tahoe Restoration Act, successfully gain support of the Senate chamber today,” said Heller. 

Heller continued, “With five generations of Hellers enjoying the Lake Tahoe Basin, this bill hits close to home for me. As the leading voice on this legislation, I’m proud of the manner in which it was pushed to new heights. Input from all key stakeholders, secured commitments of support from previous opponents, committee passage, and ultimately, success on the Senate floor were all deserved fruits of a hard labor. I would like to thank my colleagues on both sides of the aisle for garnering bipartisan support for this legislation.” 

(League to Save Lake Tahoe and Sens. Dean Heller and Harry Reid contributed to this report.)

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