Wednesday, September 20, 2017

House moves to cut millions from Chesapeake Bay funding



Jeremy Cox reports for Delmarvanow:

Since 2010, millions of federal dollars have streamed into the eastern shores of Maryland and Virginia under a revamped effort to restore the Chesapeake Bay, America's largest estuary.

But that flow of money could slow under House of Representatives legislation that calls for cutting about $1 for every $6 currently allotted to the program.

What's more, an amendment to that bill, sponsored by Virginia Republican Rep. Bob Goodlatte, would block the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency from enforcing the plan's cleanup targets.

"Through its implementation, the EPA has basically given every state in the watershed an ultimatum: either the state does exactly what the EPA says, or it faces the threat of an EPA takeover of its water quality programs," Goodlatte told the House last Thursday.

His amendment, he added, "ensures states' rights remain intact and not usurped by the EPA."

More: Harris amendment aims to stop Chesapeake sturgeon effort

The measure passed largely along party lines. But 13 of Goodlatte's fellow Republicans voted against the bill, including Maryland's Andy Harris and Virginia's Robert Wittman, Scott Taylor and Barbara Comstock.



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