Status (overview) of bill: https://olis.leg.state.or.us/liz/2016R1/Measures/Overview/HB4012
HB4012 would authorize the issuance of lottery bonds to finance water quality monitoring projects related to removal of dams and establish Water Quality Monitoring Fund. Continuously appropriates moneys in fund to Oregon Watershed Enhancement Board.
Personal Choice and Responsibility
Clearly this amended bill coincides with the Press release from Governor Brown’s office that an Agreement in Principle (AIP) has been reached between the States of Oregon and California, PacifiCorp and the federal government to move forward with amending the Klamath Hydroelectric Settlement Agreement (KHSA). The KHSA requires the demolition of the four PacifiCorp-owned dams on the Klamath River.
The removal of the Dams does not have the support of local communities, is controversial at least as the environmental damage from toxic contaminants stored can require an expensive cleanup.Also the loss of water storage may prove to be detrimental when there are drought conditions.
ORS 757.732 (Definitions for ORS 757.732 to 757.744) to 757.744 (Disclaimers) do not authorize the expenditure of any public moneys for removal of Klamath River dams.
SB1580 was introduced that would cut off collection of the Public Purpose charge on our electric bills for blowing the dams.
The current KHSA proposal to destroy the four hydroelectric dams clearly requires the consent of the United States Congress before the process can even begin. For the past five years, the proposal has failed to even reach a floor vote in either Congressional chamber.Congress failed to act by the Dec.31 deadline, the need for imposing the surcharge on ratepayers no longer existed.
This bill is an outright over reach of the administrative authority to bypass Congress approval to destroy the Klamath Dams.