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GLIN==> Northeast-Midwest Weekly Udpate -- 3 April 2000

      The Northeast-Midwest Congressional Coalition last week announced
the formation of two bipartisan task forces that will help promote the
environmental and economic well-being of the Susquehanna and Delaware
River Basins and their residents.

      Co-chairing the Susquehanna River Basin Task Force are Reps.
Sherwood Boehlert (R-NY), George Gekas (R-PA), Wayne Gilchrest (R-MD),
Maurice Hinchey (D-NY), and Paul Kanjorski (D-PA).  Seven other House
members already have joined.

      Co-chairing the Delaware River Basin Task Force are Reps.
Boehlert, Robert Borski (D-PA), Michael Castle (R-DE), and Rush Holt
(D-NJ).   Seventeen other House members from the basin already have
joined the task force.

      The new groups are hosting a series of Capitol Hill briefings, as
well as promoting legislation important to the basins.   Ongoing
meetings will have federal agency personnel describe programs and
projects important to the Susquehanna and Delaware Rivers.

      CONTACT:  George Dusenbury at the Northeast-Midwest Institute

      Senators Jim Jeffords (R-VT) and Carl Levin (D-MI) and Reps.
Wayne Gilchrest (R-MD) and Bart Stupak (D-MI) are circulating letters
seeking greater funding for Region 9 of the National Forest Service,
which encompasses northeastern and midwestern states.  The Northeast-
Midwest contains 42 percent of the national population and 12 million
acres of land and water, yet it receives only 7.8 percent of Forest
Service funding.

      Region 9's funding, in fact, has fallen despite rising needs.  In
fiscal 1995, the region received $112.5 million, but only $111.8
million in fiscal 2000, an 8 percent reduction after accounting for
inflation.  Forest Service funding, unfortunately, is based on acreage
and historical allocations, not on objective measurements of need and
use.  The criteria do not account for the character of midwestern and
northeastern forests, namely that they are forced to handle large
numbers of people in a relatively small space.

      CONTACT:  Olwen Huxley at the Northeast-Midwest Institute (544-

      Senators Jack Reed (D-RI), Arlen Specter (R-PA), Robert
Torricelli (D-NJ), and Susan Collins (R-ME) are circulating a letter
asking appropriators to support at least $120 million for the
Department of Housing and Urban Development's Office of Lead Hazard
Control.  Lead poisoning continues to rank as the number one
environmental threat to children, particularly for those living in
older buildings throughout the Northeast and Midwest.  In Baltimore,
Providence, Milwaukee, and Chicago, more than 20 percent of screened
children have dangerous levels of lead in their blood.

      CONTACTS:  Kara Stein with Senator Reed (224-4642).

      The Northeast-Midwest Institute on Thursday, April 6, is co-
sponsoring a combined heat and power workshop at the University of
Maine in Orono.  The session will describe new electricity-generation
technologies, particularly the potential for distributed generation,
that can be useful to the forest products and related industries.

      Other sponsors include the Maine Manufacturing Extension
Partnership, Maine E2 Center, University of Maine - IAC Center, and
U.S. Department of Energy.

      CONTACT:  Suzanne Watson at the Northeast-Midwest Institute (544-

      The Senate Great Lakes Task Force, Liveable Communities Task
Force, and House Sustainable Development Task Force on Friday, April
7, are hosting a briefing on the General Services Administration's
newly-established Center for Urban Development and Livability.  The
center seeks to enhance the federal government's role in creating more
livable communities through building location and design.

      The briefing on Friday will begin at 3:30 pm in room 2168 of the
Rayburn House Office Building.

      CONTACT:  Cameron Taylor at the Northeast-Midwest Senate
Coalition (224-0606).

      Senators Lincoln Chafee (R-RI) and Jim Jeffords (R-VT) last week
introduced legislation (S. 2334) to extend expensing of brownfield
remediation costs through 2007, and to extend the definition of a
targeted area for the brownfield tax incentive to include sites in
metropolitan statistical areas.  In addition, Senator Chafee has
joined as a co-sponsor of the Small Business Brownfields Redevelopment
act (S. 1408), introduced last July by Northeast-Midwest Senate
Coalition co-chairs Jeffords and Daniel Patrick Moynihan (D-NY).

      CONTACT:  Cameron Taylor at the Northeast-Midwest Senate
Coalition (224-0606).

      Senators Jim Jeffords (R-VT) and other members of the Northeast-
Midwest Senate Coalition this week will attempt to attach a Sense of
the Senate amendment on LIHEAP to the fiscal 2001 budget bill to be
considered on the Senate floor.  Inclusion of the LIHEAP amendment
demonstrates a commitment to increase LIHEAP funding above current
expenditures (including emergency funding), and to ensure that funding
is designated under the regular funding structure (i.e., not emergency
funding, as was done last year).

      CONTACT:  Cameron Taylor at the Northeast-Midwest Senate
Coalition (224-0606).

      The Congressional and Senate Task Forces on Manufacturing  co-
chaired by Reps. Bob Franks (R-NJ) and Marty Meehan (D-MA) and
Senators Joseph Lieberman (D-CT) and Olympia Snowe (R-ME)  on Monday,
April 10, are hosting a briefing with the National Center for
Manufacturing Sciences.  The session will focus on how information
technologies are impacting manufacturers in areas such as product
design, product testing, inventory monitoring, and the identification
of new markets.

      The briefing will be held on April 10 at 2:00 pm in room HC-8 of
the U.S. Capitol.  Speaking will be John Sheridan, executive director
of InfoTEST International, and Chuck Alvord, a senior executive with
TRW's System and Information Technology Group.

      CONTACT:  Tim Daniels with the Northeast-Midwest Congressional
Coalition (226-8636).

      Eight members of the Northeast-Midwest Senate Coalition signed a
letter supporting funding for several Environmental Protection Agency
(EPA) programs.  Noting that the nation's wastewater infrastructure
needs exceed $300 billion over the next 20 years, the senators argued
that strong investment in key water quality programs is necessary to
ensure safe and clean water.  These needs are particularly great
within the Northeast-Midwest region because of its dense population
centers, older infrastructure, and heavy average rainfall.

      The senators sought level funding of $1.35 billion for the Clean
Water State Revolving Fund, $825 million (an increase of $5 million
over fiscal 2000) for the Drinking Water State Revolving Fund, $160.5
million (a $45-million increase) for Water Quality Grants (section 106
of the Clean Water Act), $6 million for Pollution Prevention Grants,
and at least $200 million for Nonpoint Source Pollution Control Grants
(Section 319).

      The senators included Jim Jeffords (R-VT), Daniel Patrick
Moynihan (D-NY), Olympia Snowe (R-ME), Carl Levin (D-MI), Charles
Schumer (D-NY), Herb Kohl (D-WI), Joseph Lieberman (D-CT), and Dick
Lugar (R-IN).

      CONTACT:  Cameron Taylor at the Northeast-Midwest Senate
Coalition (224-0606).

      The Senate last week approved a measure (S. 1731) that reinstates
the Great Waters Report, which provides Congress with information on
the deposition of air toxics into the Great Lakes, Chesapeake Bay, and
other large water bodies.  The measure had been introduced by former
Senator John Chafee (R-RI) and will be championed in the House by Rep.
Vernon Ehlers (R-MI).

      CONTACT:  Rochelle Sturtevant at the Northeast-Midwest Senate
Coalition's Great Lakes Task Force (224-1211).

      Reps. Wayne Gilchrest (R-MD) and Sam Farr (D-CA) this week are
circulating a letter asking appropriators to support the Farmland
Protection Program (FPP), which is important to the small farms that
dominate the Northeast-Midwest region.  The FPP is a cost-share
program with state and local governments for the acquisition of
conservation easements to protect farmland across the nation.  It also
helps prevent sprawl since the outer boundary of high-growth areas
usually abut land used for agriculture.

      CONTACTS:  Erika Feller with Rep. Gilchrest (225-3111) or Troy
Phillips with Rep. Farr (225-2861).

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