Jeff Skelding, campaign director for HOW said, "We appreciate President Obama's ongoing support [of] the Great Lakes Restoration Initiative, even in a difficult budget climate. We are concerned, however, that while the President's $350 million request will allow us to make progress, it will be less than what we could achieve had the GLRI been funded at the higher level provided two years ago. The House faced a similar choice and even with strong support from the Great Lakes congressional delegation, the House Committee on Appropriations disappointedly chose to cut important Great Lakes funding even further from what the House and Senate supported last year.
"Great Lakes restoration faces a steep climb -- steeper in the House's budget than in the President's. Cutting successful efforts to protect drinking water, safeguard public health, create jobs and improve the quality of life for millions of people is the wrong way to go. Investing in efforts to restore the Great Lakes, a resource that more than 30 million depend on for drinking water, results in some of the best returns on the dollar in the federal budget. The Healing Our Waters-Great Lakes Coalition has consistently advocated for the Great Lakes Restoration Initiative to be funded at $475 million since it was introduced in 2009 to confront the urgent threats of toxic pollution, invasive species such as the Asian carp and habitat destruction. . . . Now that the President has released his 2012 budget request, we will turn our focus to the U.S. Congress who must enact funding levels that support the Great Lakes Restoration Initiative at $475 million in 2012 to protect our drinking water, jobs and way of life."
Access a release from the HOW Coalition (click here).