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Trump budget targets Great Lakes restoration, other water cleanup programs

WSBT 22 photo

TRAVERSE CITY, Mich. (AP) - President Donald Trump again is trying to drastically reduce or eliminate federal support for cleanups of some iconic U.S. waterways.

His proposed budget would slash Environmental Protection Agency funding for Great Lakes and Chesapeake Bay restoration programs by 90 percent.

The EPA restoration efforts mostly target industrial pollution, runoff from agriculture, runoff from disposal sites and waste from cities.

Michigan Congressman Fred Upton (R) issued the following statement:

“Michigan deserves better than this. The health of our Great Lakes must be a higher priority. While this budget proposal – like all other presidential budget proposals – is merely a blueprint it does set the administration’s priorities. It’s clear that when it comes to the Great Lakes our priorities are at odds with the administration. The Great Lakes Restoration Initiative is a vital tool used to boost our Great Lakes both environmentally and economically. Just like last year, I will fight alongside colleagues on both sides of the aisle to promote, strengthen, and preserve our Great Lakes.”

It would kill all EPA spending on programs supporting other waters including San Francisco Bay, the Gulf of Mexico and Puget Sound.

Trump made a similar attempt last year but Congress refused to go along.

His administration says state, local and tribal governments should be responsible for regional water cleanups.

But the programs are popular with members of Congress in both parties, who say they boost the economy as well as the environment. Advocates say they'll resist the proposed spending cuts.

Link: More about the EPA Great Lakes restoration efforts here -- https://www.epa.gov/greatlakes/restoring-great-lakes

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