Today President Obama released his proposed budget, which includes cuts to the Great Lakes Restoration Initiative from the current $300 million federal investment to $250 million. The budget marks the third year in a row that the president has recommended cutting the Great Lakes Restoration Initiative, which, over the last six years, has supported more than 2,900 projects in Minnesota, Michigan, Ohio, Wisconsin, Illinois, New York, Indiana, and Pennsylvania to restore fish and wildlife habitat, clean up toxic pollutants, combat invasive species like Asian carp, and reduce runoff from cities and farms.
Commenting on the budget, Todd Ambs, campaign director of the Healing Our Waters-Great Lakes Coalition, said:
“Now is not the time to cut successful programs that protect our drinking water, jobs, and way of life. Fortunately, Republicans and Democrats in Congress have been strong champions of federal Great Lakes restoration efforts and have rebuffed President Obama’s proposed cuts the last two years. We look forward to once again working with Congress to restore funding to Great Lakes protection efforts that are producing results for our environment and economy in communities throughout the region.”
On Thursday, February 11, the Healing Our Waters-Great Lakes Coalition will issue more detailed comments on the budget, the various clean water programs in the budget, and what it means for federal Great Lakes restoration efforts.
The Healing Our Waters-Great Lakes Coalition consists of 125 environmental, conservation, outdoor recreation organizations, zoos, aquariums and museums representing millions of people, whose common goal is to restore and protect the Great Lakes. Learn more at www.healthylakes.org or follow us on Twitter @healthylakes.