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Newhouse Legislation to Transfer Kennewick Irrigation District Title Moves Forward

November 15, 2018
Press Release

WASHINGTON D.C. – Today, Rep. Dan Newhouse (R-WA) released the following statement after the House Committee on Natural Resources approved federal legislation introduced by Rep. Newhouse to transfer title of U.S. Bureau of Reclamation (BOR) related works and lands to the Kennewick Irrigation District (KID). In accordance with the December 2017 Memorandum of Agreement between KID and BOR, this legislation will transfer title of works beginning at KID’s head gate and extending 40 miles east to the Columbia River. The transfer includes the conveyance of land and project facilities and should be completed no later than two years after the enactment.

“Transferring the title to local entity will allow more responsive water management, streamlining water uses on behalf of the local community,” said Rep. Newhouse. “My legislation reduces government waste and excess regulations, and I am grateful to Chairman Bishop and my colleagues on the House Natural Resources Committee for approving this important bill for Central Washington water users.”

Click here to read the text of H.R. 6652.

Background:

  • H.R. 6652 conveys title for the facilities managed and operated by Kennewick Irrigation District (KID). It does not privatize federal water projects or properties within the U.S. Bureau of Reclamation (BOR).
  • KID will complete an environmental assessment under the National Environmental Policy Act, as well as all necessary Endangered Species Act, National Historical Preservation Act, and hazardous review processes.
  • KID and BOR have committed to ensuring that all stakeholders, tribal concerns, and local interests have a seat at the table throughout the process.
  • In addition to ensuring the proper reviews are completed, KID will repay their allocated share of construction costs to the federal government.