Trump budget again targets regional water cleanup programs

Trump budget cuts to Great Lakes Restoration Initiative provoke Congressional outrage

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

The budget recommendation, released Monday, would also slash funding by 90% for programs to eliminate pollution in the Great Lakes and Chesapeake Bay, the nation's largest estuary. That needs to end, all across the board.

President Trump pushed Monday to slash funding for the Great Lakes - repeating a move he made past year. But the region's political forces are vowing to fight back.

The fund for the Chesapeake Bay is almost $73 million, but this year would receive $7.3 million.

The Healing Our Waters-Great Lakes Coalition consists of more than 150 environmental, conservation, outdoor recreation organizations, zoos, aquariums and museums representing millions of people, whose common goal is to restore and protect the Great Lakes.

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Some officials, including Republican Sen.

"Instead of investing in OH communities, so they can grow and create jobs, the president's budget asks Ohioans to pay for tax cuts for millionaires by gutting Great Lakes programs and eliminating economic development", Brown said.

"If there were to be any kind of substantial cuts, I think it would be hard to improve water quality", Dodson said.

More than $2 billion has been budgeted for the Great Lakes initiative, for more than 2,000 projects, since it began in 2010. Joyce is the Northeast-Midwest Congressional Coalition co-chairman along with Rep. Rick Nolan, Minnesota.

As members of Congress pointed out during last year's fight over GLRI funding, the Trump budget is just a suggestion, they're the ones who ultimately have power of the purse.

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