In the guise of balancing the federal budget, the U.S. House of Representatives recently passed a funding bill, or Continuing Resolution H.R. 1, that reads like a polluter’s wish list. Bearing the brunt of this attack is our environmental safeguards, and more specifically the Environmental Protection Agency, which will receive a 29% cut in funding from 2010 levels. H.R. 1 also contains numerous, non-funding related riders, that prohibits the enforcement of many of the provisions of the Clean Water, Clean Air and Endangered Species Acts. In coastal and inland communities alike, H.R. 1 will result in dirtier air to breathe and dirtier water to drink and play in. This continuing resolution also goes far to continue to support the oil industry and clear the way for more domestic drilling.
The House bill puts our environment and the health of millions of Americans at risk while doing nothing to create jobs or grow the economy. Interestingly enough, many of the programs that are most affected by the funding cuts have been successful in recent years at stimulating local economies and job growth, such as programs aimed at helping states and local communities fix and maintain their sewer infrastructure and install green, natural systems for managing stormwater runoff. Adding insult to injury, H. R. 1 also extends government handouts to wealthy corporate polluters, a move that will cost American taxpayers billions of dollars.
The Senate still has the power to block the House Continuing Resolution by passing a better bill that protects our water, our air, and our economy. Tell your senators to reject this short-sighted bill from the House, and instead pass a clean bill that protects our health and environment, not corporate polluter profits.