Dec 18 2007

Graham and Barrett Urge DOE to Reach Final Agreement with Counties

WASHINGTON, D.C. – U.S. Senator Lindsey Graham (SC) and Congressman Gresham Barrett (SC, 03) today urged the Department of Energy (DOE) to come to a final agreement with Aiken, Barnwell, and Allendale counties on a proposed Payment-in-Lieu-of-Taxes (PILT) for federal Savannah River Site (SRS) land within the respective counties.

If the agreement is accepted, the counties of Aiken, Allendale and Barnwell will receive a revised PILT from DOE.

“I hope that the proposed PILT hastens movement toward a revised agreement between DOE and Aiken County,” said Congressman Gresham Barrett. “The local and the federal government have been great partners as it relates to SRS, and I am encouraged by the fact that both understand the importance of reaching an agreement that is fair and just for all parties.  I look forward to making the formal announcement on the renewed agreement at SRS with DOE in the near future.”

“I am pleased at the progress all parties have made in negotiating a new PILT agreement,” said Graham.  “The counties are to be commended for working with DOE to negotiate an agreement fair to all.  I look forward to working with DOE and the counties to bring discussions to a positive conclusion.”

Aiken, Allendale and Barnwell County Councils entered into an agreement with DOE/SRS in 1991 on conditions that each county would receive an annual PILT for the county acreage value covered within SRS land. At the initial time of the negotiations, it was agreed that subsequent reviews were to be conducted to reevaluate the value of the SRS land.

Graham and Barrett hope a formal announcement with DOE officials on the agreed PILT can be made in January.