January 22, 2009

Udall to Serve on Four Key Senate Committees

WASHINGTON -U.S. Senator Tom Udall, D-N.M., is now officially a member of four critical Senate committees. In addition to his top-level assignments on the Committee on Commerce, Science and Transportation and the Committee on Environment and Public Works, Udall has also been appointed to the Senate Committee on Indian Affairs and the Senate Committee on Rules and Administration.

The Committee on Commerce, Science and Transportation covers issues including consumer protection, oversight and expansion of national communications infrastructure, national railways and science.

Commerce Committee Chairman Jay Rockefeller, D-WV, offered praise for Udall's appointment to the committee saying, "As a longtime Western legislator with two important national labs in his state, Tom Udall knows the importance of science for America's economy and future progress. He knows that rural America needs better access to America's telecommunications network and that American consumers deserve to be protected. I look forward to working with him on the Commerce Committee during the 111th Congress."

As a member of the Committee on Environment and Public Works, Udall will play a lead role in crafting federal environmental policy, including any legislation to address global warming. EPW will also have a large role in crafting legislation to modernize America's transportation infrastructure, which will not only help make our roads safer and better, but will also spur economic development and American jobs.

EPW Chairman Barbara Boxer said she is pleased Udall will be joining her committee. "I look forward to working with Senator Udall on creating green jobs, investing in clean energy, combating global warming, and protecting our children and families from environmental hazards," said Boxer.

Udall has also been confirmed to serve on the Committee for Indian Affairs. The committee, on which Senator Pete Domenici also served, has jurisdiction over the unique matters concerning American Indians, including Tribal Sovereignty, as well as economic development, trust responsibilities, land management, Indian education, health and loan programs.

Chairman of the Indian Affairs Committee, Senator Byron Dorgan, D-ND, praised Udall's qualifications to serve the committee. "With a solid record on issues of tribal sovereignty, and with extensive work on issues specific to tribes in the arid west, such as water rights and recovery from the ravages of Uranium development, Tom Udall brings valuable skills to the Committee on Indian Affairs," said Dorgan.

Finally, Udall will also serve on the Senate Committee on Rules and Administration, the body with jurisdiction over Congressional and Senate rules and procedures, and supervision of the people's business in the Senate. The Rules Committee is responsible for any legislation regarding election reform or campaign finance reform, issues Udall has championed throughout his public career.

"I am proud to represent the interests of New Mexicans on each of these important committees," said Udall. "We have no time to waste and I look forward to working with the Obama Administration and my colleagues in Congress to make our economy work for everyone again and move in a new direction on the most pressing issues facing us today."