WASHINGTON, D.C. — West Coast fishermen will get relief from high-interest government loans that were part of a 2003 assistance package, thanks to a provision inserted in the National Defense Authorization Act by U.S. Rep. Peter DeFazio.

DeFazio also secured inclusion of legislation to expand the Oregon Caves National Monument near Cave Junction by 4,070 acres and designate the River Styx — the underground stream running through Oregon Caves — as the first subterranean Wild and Scenic River in the nation.

The legislative package annually includes not only funding for the armed forces but also a hodgepodge of measures, sometimes controversial, that legislators add onto it in political maneuvers.

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