On Friday, Dec. 16th the Choose Clean Water Coalition learned that lobbying for proper environmental funding for fiscal year 2012 was approved! In this tough economic climate this is truly a victory for clean water!
The Omnibus Appropriations Bill that Congress passed last night included language directing EPA to spend $2 million on the Chesapeake Small Watershed Grants Program and $8 million on the Innovative Nutrient and Sediment Reduction grants.Â In the past two weeks the Coalition sent two letters (one from the Co-chairs and one with 44 Coalition members signed on) to the Appropriation Committees in the House and Senate urging them to direct EPA not take funds from these two grants programs as they have done in the past few years.
Congress has done exactly what the Coalition requested, restoring these two programs to their previously highest level â€“ which was back in 2008!
In addition, the Omnibus bill funded the EPA Chesapeake Bay Program at $57.391 million.Â Although this is less than the Presidentâ€™s budget request for FY 2012 which the Coalition requested, it is an increase over last yearâ€™s $54.391 million and represents a record funding amount — which in this budget climate is extraordinary.