Today, Representatives Sandy Levin (MI-09) and Dave Joyce (OH-14) led a bipartisan letter signed by over 40 Members of Congress urging President Trump to allocate robust funding for the Great Lakes Restoration Initiative (GLRI) in his Fiscal Year 2020 budget proposal.
"The Great Lakes are a vital resource for our nation -- important to its health and economic wellbeing -- which is why the Great Lakes Restoration Initiative continues to garner broad, bipartisan support for robust funding year after year," said Rep. Levin.
"The Great Lakes are a national treasure," said Rep. Joyce. "Our nation depends on the lakes as a mode of transportation and shipping and a source of drinking water for the region, not to mention the recreational benefits that draw millions of visitors annually. We must protect this critical resource. The Great Lakes Restoration Initiative projects remove barriers to fish spawning areas, restore beneficial uses in Ohio's Areas of Concern, reduce harmful algal blooms and protect natural habitats. I am proud to lead yet another letter requesting full funding for the GLRI."
The GLRI program supports federal agencies making grants to local and state entities for toxic cleanup projects, coastline as well as wetlands restoration projects and invasive species-related projects.
The President's 2018 budget proposal would have zeroed out funding for the program and the President proposed cutting the program's 2019 budget by ninety percent. Bipartisan efforts led by Reps. Levin, Joyce, and Congressional colleagues from the Great Lakes region saw funding restored through the appropriations process. This summer, the House approved GLRI funding at the full, $300 million level.