Rep. Larry Haler is pleased that the 2007-09 state capital budget proposed today by the House of Representatives would allocate $3 million toward design and construction of the Hanford Reach National Monument Heritage and Visitor Center.

In all, the House capital budget proposal contains more than $12 million for construction projects and other capital-related investments in Benton City, West Richland and Richland, which are in the 8th Legislative District represented by Haler.

"The Hanford Reach has a fascinating heritage, and its status as a national monument is well deserved. I'm glad the House of Representatives is interested in preserving and promoting it," said Haler, R-Richland.

Haler is also glad to see $1 million proposed for building a complex of four Babe Ruth baseball fields along State Route 240 near Horn Rapids.

"Our area already is a magnet for athletic events, and this would only enhance that reputation," said Haler.

Republicans joined Democrats to unveil the capital budget proposal today. It's contained in House Bill 1092, which received a public hearing this afternoon before the House Capital Budget Committee and is scheduled for a committee vote on Wednesday morning.

Rep. Shirley Hankins, R-Richland, serves on the committee and is a strong voice for Mid-Columbia projects, said Haler.

Other projects proposed for funding include:

Benton City Aquatic Park -- $500,000 Benton City Food Bank -- $200,000 Badger Mountain Water Park spray improvements (Richland) -- $155,675 Amon Creek land acquisition (Richland) -- $404,780 Claybell Park expansion (Richland) -- $195,960 Bombing Range Sports Complex, phase 4 (West Richland) -- $300,000

Also receiving funding in the House proposal is the proposed $13.7 million, 256-bed expansion at Connell's Coyote Ridge Corrections Center, and $666,000 for improvements to the Tri-Cities Stadium in Pasco.

Posted by Colleen Lane on
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