|May 9, 1997||223 South Division Street Carson City Nevada 89703
Executive Secretary &
District No. 1
District No. 2
District No. 3
JIM ARNOLD, JR.
JAY W. BREWER
815 16th Street N.W.
Washington, D.C 20006
Dear Mr. Sweeny
Recent events may have lead to some misunderstanding of the Nevada State AFL-CIO's position regarding the nuclear waste legislation S. 104 and H. R 1270 currently being considered by the United States Congress.
For the past fifteen years the State of Nevada has been identified by Congress as a potential site for a high level nuclear waste dump. The Nevada State AFL-CIO has never voted on the issue of nuclear waste storage in Nevada, and, consequently, has never taken a position on the issue of storage or disposal of high-level waste in Nevada.
Like any organization, there are differing views on this issue within our membership. It is true that some of our membership, including members of the Southern Nevada Building and Construction Trades Council, have supported the jobs that a nuclear waste facility may bring to Southern Nevada. However, numerous others, including the Nevada Service Employees Union and the Nevada Legislative Board of the United Transportation Union, have opposed such proposals, based on potential threats to public health and safety and the possible negative impact on our tourist based economy. The potential effects on our tourism economy has also led the Nevada Resort Associations and the trade groups representing many of Nevada's largest employers, to oppose moving nuclear waste to Nevada.
The Nevada State AFL-CIO has never, as an organization voted on the issue of a permanent repository, nor has it developed a position on the legislation pending in Congress to create an "interim" facility in Nevada. The rules and by-laws of the Nevada AFL-CIO requires a two thirds majority of our State Delegation to endorse any legislation proposal. I sincerely doubt that either measure would receive the required two-thirds majority of support. Additionally, I would like to point out that if public opinion polls are any guide, it is very clear that the vast majority of Nevadans have always opposed, and continue to oppose, the designation of Nevada as a destination for the utilities' high-level nuclear waste.
In closing, the Nevada State AFL-CIO is committed to all of our affiliates and we firmly believe in the democratic process when endorsing legislation. Only after this matter is decided by our State Delegation will this body take a position on this issue. If you have any questions or concerns please don't hesitate to contact me directly.
In Solidarity, Nevada State AFL-CIO
Nevada State AFL-CIO
cc: Harry Reid, U.S. Senator