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Greg Walden: Modernizing Oregon’s energy infrastructure

At a recent hearing of the House Energy and Commerce Committee, I spoke of the importance of updating America’s energy infrastructure. As technology continues to change the way we go about our daily lives, we also have to rethink how we deliver and consume electricity. This is especially true in central Oregon, where an outdated power grid is preventing economic growth.

Last month, I convened a meeting with city of Prineville officials, the local power utility and representatives of the Bonneville Power Administration to discuss the lack of access to enough electricity to meet the demand of a potential, major new employer.  Most of us were surprised and disappointed to learn that the electrical grid in Prineville is not sufficient to support that proposed project, and it could take three years or more before the city could get the electricity  this community needs. That is not acceptable.

We need action to modernize America’s energy infrastructure, so that communities in Oregon — like Prineville — can reach their full economic potential. We can’t keep losing out on new jobs.  The Energy and Commerce Committee will be at the forefront of tackling this challenge head on.

Boosting Oregon’s transportation priorities

Recently, I called to congratulate Elaine Chao on becoming Secretary of Transportation.  I also took the opportunity to discuss our nation’s infrastructure needs and Oregon’s transportation priorities. During our conversation, she confirmed to me that — contrary to some reports — there is no list of the Transportation Department’s priorities that excludes Oregon. Period.

Having known Elaine for years, I am confident that she will work closely with me on our district’s needs, and that Oregon’s initiatives will have the support of the Department of Transportation. I look forward to working alongside Secretary Chao as we seek to achieve Oregon’s long-term transportation goals and upgrade America’s vast infrastructure.

Contact Greg Walden’s Offices:

Washington, DC Office
2185 Rayburn HOB
Washington, DC 20515
Phone: (202) 225-6730

Bend Office
1051 NW Bond St. #400
Bend, OR 97701
Phone: (541) 389-4408

La Grande Office
1211 Washington Avenue
La Grande, OR 97850
Phone: (541) 624-2400

Medford Office
14 N. Central Ave. #112
Medford, OR 97501
Phone: (541) 776-4646

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