Congressman Newhouse on Hanford funding under new administration - NBC Right Now/KNDO/KNDU Tri-Cities, Yakima, WA |

Congressman Newhouse on Hanford funding under new administration

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RICHLAND, WA - As Donald Trump prepares to begin his term as president, the question close to the minds of many locals is what impact the new administration will have on funding at the Hanford site.

Reporter Rex Carlin spoke on the phone with Congressman Dan Newhouse this afternoon to find out about how he plans to make sure funding for Hanford doesn't get cut by the new administration.

Congressman Newhouse says the new administration will need to be educated on everything going on at the site so they can truly understand what the federal money is going toward, and he says that's been the case for every administration since the cleanup effort began.

Newhouse says elected officials representing Hanford won't be alone, since the other nuclear sites around the U.S. will need to fight to keep their funding as well.

But Newhouse says the federal government has no other option but to keep funding the cleanup at these sites.

"These efforts at Hanford and other nuclear sites are absolutely an obligation for the federal government, not only a moral one but a legal one," Newhouse said. "It takes a lot of education. It's a continuing process."

Newhouse added that historically, efforts surrounding the Hanford site have largely been bipartisan issues, so Washington's members from both sides of the aisle work to prevent budget cuts to the site.

Newhouse says that until a new energy secretary takes office, they don't have a specific direction to point their efforts...but as soon as an energy secretary is named, he says they will go to work on informing whoever it may be of the specific workings of the site.