ENERGY AND WATER DEVELOPMENT APPROPRIATIONS ACT, 2007
Mr. BRADLEY of New Hampshire. Mr. Chairman, first, I would like to take this opportunity to praise Chairman Hobson and the ranking member, Mr. Visclosky, for putting together this well-balanced bill. I applaud the chairman for his efforts in bringing this measure to the floor.
I rise, though, to ask a question of you, Mr. Chairman, because I am concerned with the provision added to the bill during the committee markup. The bill as currently written provides $10 million for the Department of Energy's Clean Cities Program. This program is devoted to the advancement and usage of alternative fuels.
In my home State of New Hampshire, the Granite State Clean Cities Coalition has done wonderful things, including the construction of a biodiesel filling station for off-road vehicles, support for the development of 10 public on-road biodiesel fueling stations, and the creation of natural gas refueling stations for the University of New Hampshire's bus fleet.
At a time when gasoline is well above $3 a gallon, I believe now more than ever we need to support programs that promote the use of alternative fuels and vehicles. However, during the committee markup, a provision was added that would set aside $8 million of the Clean Cities $10 million for E-85 ethanol infrastructure.
While I fully support the development of new E-85 stations, however, the Clean Cities Program has always been fuel neutral, awarding funds through a competitive process based on the merit of each project. I fear that allocating 80 percent of the program's funds for only one type of alternative fuel alters the competitive intent of that program.
Mr. Chairman, I would respectfully ask to be able to work with you during the committee of conference to try and rectify this issue. I thank you for yielding.