Posted on July 14, 2003
WASHINGTON, D.C. — U.S. Senators Bill Frist (R-TN) and Lamar Alexander (R-TN) today announced that the Fiscal Year (FY) 2004 Interior Appropriations Bill, which passed the Senate Appropriations Committee last Thursday, includes more than $12 million for Tennessee forest and park priorities. "Tennessee's natural resources and park services must be preserved for future generations," said Frist. "This funding will be a vital component in our quest to ensure that landmarks like the Great Smoky Mountains National Park, Chickasaw National Wildlife Refuge and Cherokee National Forest are protected for our children to enjoy. Senator Alexander and I applaud the Committee's support for this funding. We will work hard to ensure that these projects are included in the final bill." "This appropriations bill will protect land in East, Middle and West Tennessee," said Alexander. "It also provides additional funding to improve facilities at the Great Smoky Mountains National Park. Senator Frist and I will continue our work to bring conservation dollars to our state to protect its natural beauty." The Tennessee projects included in the Senate version of the FY 2004 Interior Appropriations Bill include:
- $2.36 million for Great Smoky Mountains National Park to rehabilitate comfort stations and picnic and camping facilities throughout the park.
- $1.5 million for Chickasaw National Wildlife Refuge to purchase two tracts of land containing 788 acres near Ripley, TN, in the western part of the state.
- $1.8 million for Lower Hatchie National Wildlife Refuge to acquire 900 acres of bottomland, hardwood forest in the lower Mississippi Valley near Henning, TN.
- $1.56 million for the Obed Wild and Scenic River to acquire 700 acres of land near Wartburg, TN.
- $3.8 million for Cherokee National Forest to purchase approximately 2,649 acres of the 10,000-acre Rocky Fork Tract located in the Tri-Cities area. This represents the second of three proposed purchases.
- $1 million for the acquisition of the Ray/Gettelfinger Tract, located in the northern Cumberland Plateau near Rugby, TN, between the Big South Fork National River and Recreation Area and the Pickett State Forest.
- $838,000 for the acquisition of the Jim Creek Parcel, which is adjacent to Pickett State Forest and the Tally Wilderness area, located just outside Jamestown, TN.