Trump's budget targets water cleanup programs

The GLRI has previously received bipartisan support in Congress from Great Lakes adjoining areas.

Trump made a similar attempt past year but Congress refused to go along. Multiple restoration efforts have occured in the St. Louis River estuary in Duluth-Superior under the federal program.

Trump announced the $1.2 trillion budget proposal for the next fiscal year on Monday, including in it $23 billion for border security, $21 billion for infrastructure and $17 billion to fund efforts to fight the ongoing opioid epidemic, as well as increasing military spending by 13 percent to $80 billion.

$5.4 billion for U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, which helps administer Great Lakes restoration and clean water protection programs-a reduction of 34 percent from the 2017 budget levels. Climate change has numerous potential impacts on the Great Lakes over the coming decades, many of which we are already seeing. It places the financial burden on local communities, which have taken on the lion's share of funding these expensive projects over the last 40 years and have consequently seen water bills skyrocket for individuals and families.

"If there's one thing we've learned, we can't take it for granted that others understand how important our water is", Stabenow said. Debbie Stabenow, Michigan, co-chair Great Lakes Task Force (D): "I am pretty shocked after the major bipartisan effort that we had, and the push-back was so hard after they zeroed out the money past year". "In all, it makes no sense".

Trump's budget would give it $30 million. He said he plans to continue working to protect the Great Lakes and keep the GLRI fully funded. "They prevent the introduction of new aquatic invasive species in the Great Lakes, and curtail the spread of those species around the Great Lakes". It's clear that when it comes to the Great Lakes our priorities are at odds with the administration.

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

  • Rogelio Becker