Trump Budget Cuts to Great Lakes Programs a 'Non-Starter'

Trump Budget Cuts to Great Lakes Programs a 'Non-Starter'

President Donald Trump's budget includes no money for so-called Clean Water Act Section 319 programs, which help communities reduce polluted runoff.

For a second consecutive year, President Donald Trump is trying to drastically reduce or eliminate federal support of cleanups for iconic US waterways including the Great Lakes and Chesapeake Bay.

"It's clear that when it comes to the Great Lakes our priorities are at odds with the administration", Upton said.

"If there's one thing we've learned, we can't take it for granted that others understand how important our water is", she said, calling the budget proposal "outrageous". It works to combat threats to the Great Lakes, such as invasive species or loss of habitats. Advocates say they'll resist the proposed spending cuts. MI projects have received more than $600 million in funding from this program since its establishment. With that in mind, compare the size of the Finger Lakes and the Great Lakes and it's easy to see what an enormous resource the Great Lakes are and how many people are directly affected by them. The Great Lakes are an invaluable resource to OH, and this initiative has been a successful public-private partnership that helps protect both our environment and our economy.

"The Great Lakes Restoration Initiative plays a leading role in preserving and restoring the Great Lakes ecology while strengthening the Great Lakes economy", he said. "Cutting Great Lakes investments by 90 percent - essentially eliminating the program - threatens the health of our lakes and jeopardizes Michigan's economy", Kildee said in a statement.

Trump made a similar attempt past year but Congress refused to go along.

There is some good news for the Great Lakes: the budget calls for $2.65 billion for the Clean Water and Drinking Water State Revolving Funds, which provide low-interest loans to communities to fix and build wastewater and drinking water infrastructure-an increase of $397 million from fiscal year 2017 budget levels.

"A cut of this magnitude would severely damage Bay restoration efforts, just at a time when we are seeing significant progress", said William Baker, president of the Chesapeake Bay Foundation.

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