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November 09, 2004
Contact: Guy Norman, (360) 906-6708
or Curt Leigh, (360) 902-2422

Proposed Lewis River hydro project relicensing topic of public meeting

VANCOUVER, Wa. - A proposed settlement agreement for relicensing four hydro-electric facilities on the Lewis River will be discussed during a public meeting here Nov. 22.

The meeting begins at 7 p.m. in the Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife's (WDFW) Southwest Washington regional office, 2108 Grand Boulevard in Vancouver.

During the meeting, WDFW staff will summarize key elements in a proposed 50-year relicensing agreement for Merwin, Yale, Swift No. 1 and Swift No. 2 dams. The Swift No. 2 facility is owned by Cowlitz County Public Utility District and the remaining three facilities are owned by PacifiCorp, a utility based in Portland, Or.

The agreement includes provisions to re-open areas of the Lewis River watershed to salmon and bulltrout, protect wildlife habitat and improve recreational facilities along the river.

The relicensing settlement is scheduled to be signed later this year by negotiating parties that include the operating utilities, tribes, state and federal resource agencies, Cowlitz, Clark and Skamania counties and environmental group representatives.