PORTLAND, Ore. — Federal legislation to improve sanitation and water supplies at fishing sites crucial to the heritage of several Pacific Northwest tribes has passed the U.S. House after three years of delays.
The bill now heads to the U.S. Senate, where similar legislation has also been introduced.
The House bill that passed Monday would provide $11 million for improvements at alternative fishing sites created by the U.S. government after flooding from dam construction on the Columbia River inundated tribal homes and fishing camps.
Housing near the fishing sites is limited and several hundred tribal members now live year-round at some of the camps, creating unsanitary conditions.
Charles Hudson, with the Columbia River Inter-Tribal Fish Commission, says the commission has identified 18 sites that need attention in both Oregon and Washington.