Republican News

Republican News

            WASHINGTON – In response to a vote by the Senate Appropriations Committee to approve the Domenici Amendment on outer continental shelf royalty language in the Interior Appropriations Bill, U.S. Senator Pete Domenici, ranking member of the Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee, issued the following statement:
 
            “I am pleased that the Appropriations Committee approved my amendment to strike language that would have penalized companies that negotiated deepwater leases in the outer continental shelf in 1998 and 1999.
 
            “The effect of my amendment is to bring this challenging issue back to where it belongs—in an authorizing committee.  The language inserted by Senator Feinstein into the Interior Appropriations Bill would have invalidated proper, legal contracts that were negotiated by the United States government. 
 
            “While I certainly share the frustration over the substantial loss of revenue as a result of the way these contracts were written, I do not believe that we should be in the business of invalidating legally binding contracts.  At a minimum, this provision would have set off years worth of litigation, during which no solution would have been found to this problem.
 
            “I look forward to finding a better, legally permissible approach to this question that will bring companies back to the table and stand a better chance of bringing revenue into the Federal Treasury.”
 
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