Chair Grijalva Helps Secure Funding for Rooftop Solar for Vulnerable Households in Puerto Rico, Other Committee Wins in Government Funding Bill

Washington, D.C. – Following today’s House passage of the year-end government funding omnibus bill and imminent signing into law, House Natural Resources Committee Chair Raúl M. Grijalva (D-Ariz.) today issued the following statement on inclusion of $1 billion for rooftop solar and battery storage for low-income households and households with disabilities in Puerto Rico. In October, shortly after Hurricane Fiona caused an island-wide blackout, Chair Grijalva led a 38-member letter requesting $5 billion for this purpose.

“The people of Puerto Rico have suffered with a fragile, unreliable electric grid for far too long,” said Chair Grijalva. “As the climate crisis continues to unfold, this funding will go a long way in making sure that some of the most vulnerable residents on the island are safe in the face of stronger and more intense storms. To be clear, however, this amount of funding won’t be enough to extend that security to everyone who needs it. I’ll keep working with my colleagues to ensure proper oversight of Puerto Rico’s current energy system and to help move the island toward its goal of a more resilient clean energy future.”

In the aftermath of recent hurricanes and other natural disasters, solar power has helped many residents and businesses in Puerto Rico keep the lights on. For those with electric medical devices or medications requiring refrigeration, including people with disabilities, a reliable source of power can be lifesaving. Dozens of nonprofit organizations, businesses, and faith-based institutions supported Chair Grijalva’s request.

Other Natural Resources Provisions in the Consolidated Appropriations Act of 2023

The House-passed omnibus bill contains several other Natural Resources Committee wins, including more than 50 bipartisan public lands provisions that create management efficiencies, provide important updates to existing national park units, and enhance the conservation and preservation of diverse stories that reflect all Americans. Among these provisions is a version of the African American Burial Grounds Preservation Program championed by the late Rep. A. Donald McEachin (D-Va.).

Several provisions in the omnibus will help promote sustainable fisheries, including one mirroring the Driftnet Modernization and Bycatch Reduction Act, which will phase out destructive driftnet fishing gear that entangles and kills marine wildlife. Another provision will update and modernize fish disaster laws, directing assistance to those affected by fishery disasters. The disaster supplemental includes $300 million for fishery disasters. The bill also establishes a task force to study the research and conservation needs of Alaska salmon.

The omnibus also includes new investments in drought preparedness and relief, namely for the Colorado River Basin. These provisions will provide federal resources and support for water conservation, fish and wildlife recovery, and enhanced recreation opportunities. 

In a step backward for conservation, the omnibus includes a provision that codifies a problematic National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) rule that a district court deemed drastically insufficient to protect highly endangered right whales from being entangled and killed in lobster fishing ropes and gear. The court mandated that NOAA promulgate a stricter rule by December 2024, however, this provision in the omnibus will delay the new rule until 2028. Currently, it is estimated that there are fewer than 350 right whales remaining, making them one of the most endangered marine mammals on the planet.

On inclusion of this provision in the omnibus, Chair Grijalva said, “Putting this provision in the bill undermines the Endangered Species Act and Marine Mammal Protection Act and will send the North Atlantic Right Whale even further along the trajectory to extinction. Fortunately, however, we fought hard to secure $20 million in the omnibus to ensure the lobster industry transitions to ropeless gear to protect these whales. I intend to continue fighting for the protection of our oceans and marine mammals and will be monitoring this issue closely.”


A full list of the Natural Resources Committee bills included in the omnibus is below:


Department of the Interior Provisions

  • S. 557, Native Plant Species Pilot Program (Sens. Collins, Cantwell) (H.R. 1548, Cartwright)
  • S. 753, Highlands Conservation Act reauthorization (Sen. Murphy) (H.R. 2793, Sean Patrick Maloney)
  • S. 2433, Federal Land Asset Inventory Reform (Sens. Cramer, Heinrich) (H.R. 5522, Kind)
  • S. 4444, Tribal eligibility for R&PP land conveyances (Sen. Padilla) (H.R. 8115, LaMalfa)


Forest Service Provisions

  • S. 3997, Land Between the Lakes amendments (Sen. McConnell) (H.R. 7399, Comer)
  • H.R. 297, Hawaii National Forest Study (Case) (S. 554, Sen. Hirono)


Land Conveyances and Exchanges

  • S. 569, Gilt Edge Mine conveyance (Sen. Thune) (H.R. 1638, Dusty Johnson)
  • S. 1128, University of Alaska land selections (Sen. Murkowski) (H.R. 2546, Young)
  • S. 1222, Bonneville Shoreline Trail land conveyance (Sen. Romney) (H.R. 2551, Krishnamoorthi)
  • S. 1631, Arizona Experiment Station land conveyance (Sen. Kelly) (n/a)
  • H.R. 5093, Wind River (Herrera Beutler)


National Park Service Bills

(New NPS units)

  • S. 3141, New Philadelphia National Historical Park (Sen. Durbin) (H.R. 820, LaHood)


Existing National Park Service Units

  • S. 1317, Sunset Crater Volcano NM boundary adjustment (Sen. Kelly) (H.R. 803, DeGette)
  • S. 1344, Pullman National Historical Park redesignation (Sen. Durbin) (H.R. 2626, Kelly)
  • S. 1718, Rosie the Riveter NHP expansion (Sen. Padilla) (H.R. 1117, DeSaulnier; H.R. 803, DeGette)
  • S. 2158, Cape Cod National Seashore Advisory Commission (Sen. Markey) (H.R. 817, Keating; H.R. 803, DeGette)
  • S. 2438, Cane River Creole NHP Boundary Modification (Sen. Cassidy) (H.R. 4648, Mike Johnson)
  • S. 3185, Delaware Water Gap NRA amendments (Sen. Toomey) (H.R. 6364, Cartwright)
  • S. 3307, Wilson’s Creek National Battlefield additions (Sen. Blunt) (H.R. 6130, Long)
  • S. 3338, Ste. Genevieve NHP boundary revision (Sen. Blunt) (H.R. 6199, Jason Smith)
  • S. 4114, Bar Harbor, ME land conveyance for housing (Sen. King) (n/a)
  • S. 5129, Mammoth Cave NP boundary expansion (Sen. McConnell) (n/a)
  • H.R. 268, Palo Alto Battlefield NHP Boundary Adjustment (Vela)
  • H.R 7496, Ram Head Plaque (Plaskett)
  • H.R. 7942, Valley Forge (Owens)


National Park Service Studies

  • S. 3685, John Parker House NPS study (Sen. Brown) (H.R. 6799, Wenstrup)
  • S. 5031, Dearfield, CO NPS study  (Sen. Hickenlooper) (H.R. 6438, Buck)
  • H.R. 7912, Memphis lynching locations NPS study (Cohen)
  • H.R. 1354, Santa Monica study (Lieu)


National Park Service Programs

  • S. 2367 Frederick, MD NPS historic preservation center (Sen. Cardin) (H.R. 4494, Trone)
  • S. 3240 National Mall permit fee waivers for veterans (Sen. Rubio) (H.R. 1029, Steube)
  • S. 3667 African American burial grounds preservation (Sen. Brown) (H.R. 6805, Adams)
  • S. 4168 National Park Foundation reauthorization (Sens. Portman, King) (H.R. 7693, Westerman)
  • H.R. 1931 Japanese American Confinement Education (Matsui) (S. 4576, Sen. Schatz)
  • H.R. 6434 Japanese American World War II history network (Obernolte) (S. 4555, Sen. Barrasso)


Wild and Scenic Rivers

  • S. 491 York Wild and Scenic River (Sen. King) (H.R. 1469, Pingree, H.R. 803, DeGette)
  • S. 4122, Housatonic Wild and Scenic River  (Sen. Murphy) (H.R. 7551, Hayes)
  • H.R. 4358, Little Manatee WSR (Buchanan) (S. 5283, Sen. Scott)
  • H.R 4404, Kissimmee River WSR (Soto)


National Trails

  • S. 4707, Buckeye National Scenic Trail study (Sen. Portman) (H.R. 6142, Tim Ryan)


Memorials and Commemorative Works

  • S. 3447, National Service Animals Commemorative Work (Sen. Blumenthal) (H.R. 6353, Wild)
  • S. 3579, Jean Monet Commemorative Work (Sen. Coons) (H.R. 6611, Keating)
  • S. 4121, Kol Israel National Memorial (Sen. Sherrod Brown) (H.R. 7618, Shontel Brown)
  • S. 4377, El Paso Community Healing Garden (Sens. Cornyn, Luján) (H.R. 4380, Escobar)
  • S. 4732, Enslaved Voyages Commemorative Work (Sen. Booker) (H.R. 4009, Norton)
  • H.R. 3531, Women Who Worked on the Home Front WWII Commemorative Work (Norton) (S. 1814, Sen. Duckworth)
  • H.R. 6201, National Liberty Memorial reauthorization (Watson Coleman) (S. 3334, Sen. Grassley)
  • S.J.Res. 62, Approving location of Fallen Journalists memorial (Sen. Cardin) (H.J.Res. 96, Napolitano)
  • H.R. 7075 Ukrainian Independence Park (Spartz)
  • H.R. 6720 Thomas Paine Memorial (Raskin)



  • H.R. 7283 STREAM Act, (Cartwright) (S. 3957, Sen. Casey)


ENR Water Package

  • H.R. 3877, Salton Sea Projects Improvements Act (Ruiz) (S. 2693, Sen. Padilla)
  • H.R. 5001, Upper Colorado and San Juan River Basins Recovery Act (Neguse) (S. 3693, Sen. Hickenlooper)
  • H.R. 9173, Colorado River Basin Conservation Act (Stansbury) (S. 4579, Sen. Hickenlooper)
  • H.R. 6369, Sun River Hydropower Authorization Act (Rosendale) (S. 3450, Sen. Daines)
  • S. 4176, A bill to authorize the use of funds for certain Carey Act projects (Sen. Risch) (n/a)


Department of Commerce & Oceans Package

  • H.R. 5453, Fishery Resource Disasters Improvement Act (Huffman) (S. 2923, Sen. Wicker)
  • H.R. 404, Driftnet Modernization and Bycatch Reduction Act (Lieu) (S. 273, Sen. Feinstein)
  • H.R. 6651, Alaska Salmon Research Task Force Act (Young) (S. 3429, Sen. Sullivan)
  • IUU technical corrections to NDAA provisions



  • H.R. 6734, Keep America’s Refuges Operational Act of 2022 (Jeffries) (S. 4194, Sen. Carper)



  • H.R. 6289, To provide the consent of Congress to an amendment to the Constitution of the State of New Mexico (Stansbury) (S. 3404, Sen. Heinrich)
  • H.R. 6785, Right Whale Coexistence Act of 2022 (Moulton) (S. 3664, Sen. Booker)
  • Right Whale/Lobster Fisher Provisions (n/a)


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