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Crapo notes Idaho projects in THUD Appropriations bill

Washington, DC - Programs to expand geothermal heating, student safety, transit programs and a Treasure Valley Detox Center are among those approved by the U.S. Senate today with passage of the Fiscal Year 2008 Transportation, Housing and Urban Development Appropriations Bill. Idaho Senator Mike Crapo says the bill also contains funding for renovations at Pocatello's community recreation center and for new economic education efforts in Lewiston. The bill was approved by a vote of 88-7 this morning.

"While this bill includes needed improvements on roadways including Interstate 84, U.S. Highway 30 and at Idaho's airports, we have also prioritized funding for other Idaho-specific projects," said Idaho Senator Mike Crapo.

Crapo-specific spending priorities include:

• $200,000 for a community detox center in Boise
• $250,000 to expand renewable geothermal heating across the Boise River for use at Boise State University
• $200,000 for Community Recreation Center renovations in Pocatello
• $250,000 in Twin Falls for a West End Branch of the Boys and Girls Club
• $500,000 to improve U.S. Highway 30 between McCammon and Topaz.

Crapo and Idaho Senator Larry Craig also requested funding for these projects:

• $ 5 million for City of Rocks Back Country Byway
• $ 4.52 million for mass transit improvements across Idaho
• $ 1.25 million for runway improvement at the Boise Airport
• $1.5 million to improve Interstate 84 in the Boise area
• $800,000 for the College of Southern Idaho Student Safety Initiative in Twin Falls
• $450,000 for a preservation effort in Chesterfield, founded around the turn of the century by immigrants to Idaho.
• $400,000 for economic efforts sponsored by the Lewiston School District.

Crapo noted his concern with overall size of the Transportation, Housing and Urban Development and Related Agencies funding bill, and that it could face a Presidential veto. "Senator Craig and I worked together to include projects critical to Idahoans alongside the ongoing spending in these appropriations bills, but efforts by some to increase the overall size of the appropriations bills could put the bill in danger of a veto. Remember that these spending directives inside the bill do not increase the overall cost. These requests now go to a conference committee between the Senate and the House, where we will continue to advocate for Idaho's priorities," Crapo added.

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