WASHINGTON, D.C. – Today, Senator Mazie K. Hirono (D-HI) released the following statement on Senate passage of the continuing resolution-legislation to keep the government funded—which includes $350 million to address the Red Hill crisis. The legislation, which now heads to the President’s desk to be signed into law, includes $250 million in funding for the Navy, Marine Corps, Army, and Air Force to cover expenses incurred related to drinking water contamination and $100 million for the Department of Defense to comply with the State of Hawaii’s emergency order to defuel the Red Hill tanks. Senator Hirono will continue to fight for additional funding to defuel safely and for the DoD to develop and implement a long-term plan to meet the strategic fueling needs of the Indo Pacific region.
“The Department of Defense must fully comply with the State of Hawaii’s Executive Order to defuel the tanks at Red Hill and this funding is necessary step to ensure that happens. This crisis has caused significant financial burden and severe hardships for families and businesses in Oahu, including the almost 4,000 families who are still displaced. I’m pleased we were also able to secure funding for costs incurred to cover emergencies and extraordinary expenses for families and businesses who have been impacted. The Navy must do everything possible to support families and businesses while they work to defuel the tanks and resolve this crisis as quickly as possible.
“At the same time, given the likely shutdown of Red Hill, DoD must come up with a long-term solution to address the strategic fuel reserve needs of the Indo Pacific region. I will fight to ensure the upcoming NDAA includes necessary provisions to protect Hawaii’s water and our national security.
“The health and safety of Oahu residents is my top priority and nothing is more important than protecting access to clean drinking water.”