ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (AP) — Two members of New Mexico's congressional delegation are pushing for a House vote on legislation that would free up federal funding to clean up abandoned uranium mines.
U.S. Reps. Steve Pearce, R-N.M., and Ben Ray Lujan, D-N.M., say House approval is needed to get the bill to the president's desk. Pearce and Lujan spelled out their request in a letter to House leaders on Wednesday.
The legislation was introduced by U.S. Sen. Jeff Bingaman, D-N.M. The Senate has already voted unanimously in favor of the bill.
Under the Abandoned Mine Land program, the federal government collects revenue from coal companies to fund abandoned mine cleanup. Each state receives a share of the money, but the program currently restricts the ability of states to use the money for cleaning up noncoal mines.
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New Mexico is located in the southwestern region of the U.S. Inhabited by Native American populations for many centuries, New Mexico has also been part of Imperial Spain, part of Mexico, and a U.S. territory.