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'Try the Truth, Mr. Hodel'

May 07, 1986

Congratulations are in order for an editorial that was accurate, well-written and to the point.

Since coming to Congress in 1981, I have been involved in countless debates on policy for the Outer Continental Shelf. Negotiations have ranged from arduous at least to misleading at best, such as Secretary Hodel's repudiation of last July's congressionally negotiated agreement.

I am a member of the California negotiating team designated by the Speaker of the House in an attempt to work out another agreement with Interior over the offshore leasing issue. While I remain optimistic over the outcome of our current negotiations, I am no longer naive enough to believe that Interior will continue to conduct good-faith discussions without the incentive of a leasing moratorium that contains the areas we have sought to protect.

When I testified for a renewal of the moratorium on April 17 before the Appropriations Subcommittee on the Interior, Secretary Hodel characterized the move as "bad faith."

Yet the secretary sees no "bad faith" in characterizing the citizens of California as self-serving and disinterested in the nation's energy needs.

You did not point out in your editorial that the Administration has decided to limit purchases for our strategic petroleum reserves; has put an end to tax credits for alternative energy production and conservation; and has lowered fuel economy standards to allow American drivers to consume an extra 1.54 billion gallons of gasoline. If the Administration feels comfortable enough with the energy security of our nation to propose these shortsighted measures, there should be no objection to developing the most sensitive areas of our coastline last instead of first.


Member of Congress

41st District

San Diego

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