Blumenauer Calls for Sauvie Island Bridge Funding

April 10, 2002
Press Release
WASHINGTON, DC-Congressman Blumenauer officially encouraged a congressional committee to provide funds to help expedite the replacement of the failing Sauvie Island Bridge. Blumenauer's request to the U.S. House Transportation Appropriations Subcommittee was for $3 million from the federal Bridge Discretionary funds for Multnomah County to begin the required environmental work prior to replacement of the bridge.

"The farm families and businesses who depend on this vital link deserve Congress' help in repairing it," said Blumenauer. "Analyzing our options and examining the environmental impacts are the first steps toward the bridge's replacement-a project I will seek to fund in the upcoming reauthorization of the Surface Transportation Act, also known as TEA-21."

The request was made to the subcommittee that decides which local transportation projects will receive funding in the fiscal year 2003 budget. The subcommittee allows Members of Congress to request funding for only five projects.

Agricultural businesses on Sauvie Island in Multnomah County, Oregon, are totally dependent upon this single bridge over an arm of the Willamette River for access to Portland markets and freight facilities. In its current condition, the businesses are severely limited in their ability to access markets for lumber and agricultural products. Multnomah County has recently been compelled to put the aged and failing bridge under severe weight restrictions. This has had a serious and negative impact on the economy of the island.