Congressional Leaders Unveil Tahoe Plan

Senator John Ensign
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Six years after former President Clinton promised an intensive effort to save Lake Tahoe, congressional leaders joined today to unveil a new plan guaranteeing $30 million in federal money annually to help an endangered national treasure.

Legislation announced by Republican Sen. John Ensign and backed by Democratic lawmakers and President Bush is expected to ensure the federal government’s full $300 million share of a near $1 billion Tahoe restoration plan will be met, Ensign said.

The bill, which Ensign said he expects to be through Congress and signed by Bush within two months, should reverse a situation that has year-to-year federal appropriations failing to meet targets of $30 million per year.

Since Clinton’s Lake Tahoe summit in June 1997, the federal government has only appropriated about $106 million, well below the pace experts said is necessary if Tahoe’s cobalt blue waters are to be kept from turning a murky green.