Upper Monongahela River Association, Inc.
P.O. Box 519
Granville, WV 26534-0519

Monday 19 July 2004

Senator Robert C. Byrd
300 Virginia Street, Suite 2630
Charleston WV 25301
202-224-3954 (fax 228-0002)
304-342-5855 (fax 343-7144)

SUBJECT: WRDA 2004 & Pittsburgh District Funding

Dear Senator Byrd:

Worth Hager, President of the National Waterways Conference (202-296-4415, waterways.org) is expressing to Congress her concerns about the Water Resources Development Act of 2004. We UMRA share her concerns, and we ask that you consider her reservations concerning the act.

Our UMRA basic approach to waterways issues, especially as they affect recreational use of our nation's waterways in general and the US Army Corps of Engineers Pittsburgh District in particular, is expressed in our Navigation Resolution. You can view this resolution and its supporters on our UPPERMON.ORG website. We ask for your support.

One subset of our Navigation Resolution is support for Congressman Mollohan's initiative to have our three Upper Mon in WV locks remotely operated from the Point Marion PA lock.

A second subset is our Interim Solution for Upper Mon lock hours, until a final fix for keeping our Upper Mon in WV locks open is in place.

Again, we ask for your support for these two initiatives, which also may be viewed on our website. It appears that neither initiative is in any FY 2005 authorization or funding bills.

Congressman Mollohan and Congressman Murtha are working to get the Pittsburgh District fully funded, and we hope that you will help with their endeavors.

I am enclosing a recent email exchange with the offices of Congressman Mollohan and Congressman Murtha, re status of Pittsburgh District funds for FY 2005. It does not look good, and, again, we ask for your help.





Donald C. Strimbeck, Secretary

304-599-7585 (fax 4131)

cc via fax:

Senator Rockefeller, 202-224-6472 (fax 7665), 304-367-0122 (fax 0822)
Congressman Murtha, 202-225-2065 (fax 5709), 814-535-2642, fax 814-539-6229
Congressman Rahall, 202-225-3452 (fax 9061), 304-522-6425, fax 304-529-5716
Congressman Mollohan, 202-225-4172 (fax 7564), 304-292-3019 (fax 3027)



ANGELA, pasted below are two emails re FY 2005 Energy & Water Development Appropriations Act. I want to write Senator Byrd this week. But, before I do so, I would like your response to my 27 June email. I know you have been on vacation and just have not had time to respond. See also Brad Clemenson response below. THANKS!!


Email from Don Strimbeck to Amy Tomer, 1604 Monday 28 June 2004:

AMY, my questions to Angela are in below message. I realize that Washington staff probably are taking a break whilst congress is on their break, and, answers I ask for can wait until Angela returns. But, if you can help before then, fine! None of this is urgent.

And, of course, we have to see what senate proposes, and, final conference bill. I hope final version will have some help in it for Upper Mon and Upper Allegheny.

Donald C. Strimbeck, Secretary

Upper Monongahela River Association Incorporated

109 Broad Street, P.O. Box 519

Granville, WV 26534-0519

304-599-7585 (Fax:4131)

Email: "mailto:dcsoinks@adelphia.net"


----- Original Message -----

From: "mailto:dcsoinks@adelphia.net"

To: "mailto:Lotta.Neer@mail.house.gov" ; "mailto:Angela.Ohm@mail.house.gov" ; "mailto:Amy.Tomer@mail.house.gov" ; "mailto:brad.clemenson@mail.house.gov"

Cc: "mailto:worth@waterways.org"

Sent: Sunday, June 27, 2004 11:08 AM

Subject: FY 2005 Energy & Water Development Appropriations Act.


The FY2005 Energy and Water Development Appropriations bill was passed by House at 3:02pm Friday 25 June 2004, per email from Worth Hager, President, National Waterways Conference, "http://www.waterways.org" .

Go to "http://thomas.loc.gov" , and, type H.R. 4614 in search box, and, go to HR 4614 EH version.

You can view entire bill in PDF/Adobe, or, printer-friendly display. I Strimbeck printed out the sixteen page bill via printer-friendly display. I could not locate anything in the bill for the Pittsburgh District of the US Army Corps of Engineers in general, and, in particular, for the Upper Allegheny and the Upper Mon. And, for Upper Mon in WV, I could not find anything, specifically, funds for remote operation of our Morgantown, Hildebrand, and, Opekiska locks, from Point Marion lock, and, our Interim Solution Upper Mon Lock Hours. You can check our UMRA website http://www.uppermon.org for Corps initial report re remote operation of our locks, and, for Interim Solution and supporters as of this date.

I am asking ANGELA OHM at Congressman Mollohan's office, and, Brad CLEMENSON at Congressman Murtha's office, if I am correct in my above observations?! Second, do I have everything pertinent to FY2005 E&W bill, or, if not, what am I missing?! Third, House Report Number 108-569 seems not to be of any help re appropriations details re HR4614 EH.

We all realize, given the acrimonious situation in Congress, that getting the funds we want for the Pittsburgh District is difficult for our Representatives. And, we know and appreciate that Congressman Mollohan and Congressman Murtha are working hard on these matters. But, it is a long time and patience struggle!!

Email from Brad Clemenson, Congressman Murtha's office, 1520 Tuesday 29 June 2004:

Mr. Strimbeck:

You are correct in regard to funding for the Upper Allegheny River. Mr. Murtha is working hard to prevent the RIF that could take out 225 employees and undermine the engineering capabilities in the Pittsburgh District, and he's extremely concerned about the dragging out of the schedule for the Lower Mon project -- which by the latest projections now wouldn't be finished until 2019. Mr. Murtha was able to get $11 million added in the House to the Lower Mon project, bringing the funding in the House to $42 million -- less than ideal but making some progress. Obviously the upper locks aren't worth too much if the lower locks get shut down by a malfunction or worse. So the Lower Mon Projec has been his top priority this year -- as well as trying to have some impact in reducing the number of engineers and other jobs that we'll lose. He was able to help with something not in the Corps budget -- he got additional money for something called FUSRAP to clean up environmental hazards at sites where the Defense Department previously funded work; this extra FUSRAP funding gets transfered to the Army Corps in part for work in Armstrong County, and it's expected to help at least a little with reducing the job losses. Under the circumstances, I cannot offer any encouragement with regard to the potential for funding to maintain longer hours of operation on the upper Allegheny (or the upper Mon, for that matter, although Mr. Mollohan may be working on the upper Mon independently).

Brad Clemenson, District Director for Congressman Murtha