Senate passes Energy and Water spending bill

Action comes after Sen. Tom Coburn held up the legislation over exclusion of language requiring public disclosure of certain mandatory reports from agencies to Congress.

The Senate Thursday afternoon approved the final version of the $33.5 billion fiscal 2010 Energy and Water Appropriations bill, sending it to President Obama for his signature. Passage, by a 80-17 vote, came after the Senate on Wednesday voted 79-17 to limit debate on the measure.

Senate Energy and Water Appropriations Subcommittee Chairman Byron Dorgan, D-N.D., lamented that it took so long to get the bill done.

"We've got to get appropriations bills moving, and apparently it doesn't mean anything to some people," Dorgan said.

His comments were directed at Sen. Tom Coburn, R-Okla., who held up the measure because a Senate-adopted Coburn amendment to require public disclosure of reports from agencies to Congress mandated by appropriations bills, excluding sensitive reports on national security and defense, was not included in the final version of the bill.

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