Interior debate to continue; omnibus amendment firms up
S. 2237: The $13.4 billion Interior and related agencies appropriations bill for FY '99. (S.Rpt. 105-227) Floor debate: Last week's floor action included the adoption of a number of manager's amendments, mostly from Senate Appropriations Interior Subcommittee Chairman Slade Gorton (R-Wash.). For example, some amendments would make technical changes to the cancellation of the timber purchaser road credit; add further restrictions to the Forest Service charging indirect costs to off-budget and other funds; and say Congress or Federal Energy Regulatory Commission licensees must give their consent before federal agencies can alter dams on the Columbia and Snake rivers or their tributaries. Andrew Fahlund, coordinator of the Hydropower Reform Coalition, was still critical of the last changed rider. "All this does is allow an industry to regulate itself, and that is an absurd notion," he said.