What: All Issues : Environment : Clean Water/Water Conservation : (H.R. 2288) Passage of legislation authorizing funding to help endangered species of fish recover in the San Juan River (which runs through parts of New Mexico, Colorado, Utah, and Arizona) Basin and the Upper Colorado River Basin (which runs through parts of Colorado, New Mexico, Wyoming, and Utah)
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(H.R. 2288) Passage of legislation authorizing funding to help endangered species of fish recover in the San Juan River (which runs through parts of New Mexico, Colorado, Utah, and Arizona) Basin and the Upper Colorado River Basin (which runs through parts of Colorado, New Mexico, Wyoming, and Utah)
house Roll Call 273     May 18, 2010
Y = Conservative
N = Progressive
Winning Side:
Progressive

This was a vote on a motion to suspend the rules and pass legislation authorizing funding for programs to help endangered species of fish recover in the San Juan River (which runs through parts of New Mexico, Colorado, Utah, and Arizona) Basin and the Upper Colorado River Basin (which runs through parts of Colorado, New Mexico, Wyoming, and Utah). H.R. 2288 authorized “such sums as may be necessary” through 2023 for these fish conservation initiatives. (Funding for those initiatives was previously set to expire in 2011.) The non-partisan Congressional Budget Office estimated that implementing the legislation would cost $12 million per year through 2015, and $3 million to $4 million annually from 2016 through 2023.

Motions to suspend the rules limit time allowed for debate, and prohibit members from offering amendments. A two-thirds vote is required to approve the motion and pass a bill, rather than the usual majority.

Rep. Grace Napolitano (D-CA) urged support for the bill: “H.R. 2288 will help ensure the continued delivery of water from Federal water projects to irrigators and municipal and industrial contractors throughout the Upper Colorado River Basin through fiscal year 2023….These recovery programs are nationally recognized examples of diverse stakeholders coming together to collaboratively find solutions without litigation that allow everyone to use the river systems to promote economic growth while supporting compliance with the Endangered Species Act and the recovery of native fish species within the Colorado River Basin.”

Rep. Tom McClintock (R-CA) argued the legislation would damage the economies of western states: “This measure offers yet another example of how the Endangered Species Act has put a gun to the head of the West. The unreasonable effect of this law is now impoverishing millions of people across the country. In California communities, it has devastated the agricultural sector of our economy, and it threatens us all with permanent water shortages, skyrocketing food prices, and chronic unemployment.”

The House agreed to the motion to suspend the rules and pass the fish conservation bill by a vote of 264-122. 228 Democrats and 36 Republicans voted “yea.” 119 Republicans and 3 Democrats voted “nay.” As a result, the House passed legislation authorizing funding to help endangered species of fish recover in the San Juan River Basin and the Upper Colorado River Basin.

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