Governors Brown and Inslee call for increased federal Hanford funding

Governors Kate Brown and Jay Inslee yesterday sent a letter to President Donald Trump, federal energy and budget officials urging increased funding for Hanford cleanup efforts.

Noting the incident earlier this month of a collapsed tunnel at the Plutonium Uranium Extraction Plant (PUREX), Brown and Inslee said the incident is “an urgent reminder of the challenges in cleaning up the Hanford site that require a rededication of attention and resources in order to ensure progress moving forward.” The governors also noted the new legal requirements governing the federal government’s cleanup responsibilities, which were won by the State of Washington in federal court last year.

The president’s earlier budget blueprint released in March did include an increase in funding for the office within the U.S. Energy Department charged with the cleanup of all of the nation’s nuclear waste sites, but Brown and Inslee are asking that additional resources be provided specifically to the Office of River Protection and the Richland Operations Office that are responsible for Hanford cleanup.

President Trump is expected to release a more detailed budget proposal next week.

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