Monday, January 20, 2020
US flag

Feds boost Bay funding

Funding for key Chesapeake Bay restoration efforts was increased in the federal budget passed last month, Maryland Reporter.com reports in an article by Timothy B Wheeler for the Bay Journal.

Great blue heron on the Chesapeake Bay (iStockPhoto)

The US Environmental Protection Agency’s Chesapeake Bay Program, which guides the overall restoration work throughout the six-state watershed, will get $85 million, the most it’s ever received and a 16% increase over what the program received annually from Congress for the last five years.

It’s also almost $78 million more than the Trump White House had requested for this year, a decrease that would have cut nearly 90 percent out of the Bay Program budget.

“We fought hard for this investment, and I’m pleased that this effort succeeded, despite the Administration’s continued attempts to slash this funding,” the Journal quoted Sen Chris Van Hollen of Maryland as saying. The increase was good news for environmentalists.

Kristin Reilly, director of the Choose Clean Water Coalition, which represents more than 240 groups in the Chesapeake watershed, called the increased Bay Program funding “a great victory for clean water”: “As the 2025 deadline approaches to have all programs and practices in place to restore water quality,” she said, “continued investment by the federal government in the Bay Program will pay huge dividends not only for the environmental benefits, but also to communities and local economies throughout the watershed.”

In addition, the National Park Service got a 50 percent increase for its Chesapeake Bay Gateways and Watertrails Network, a collection of more than 170 sites in Maryland, Virginia, Pennsylvania, Delaware, New York, West Virginia, and Washington where the public can connect with the natural and cultural heritage of the Bay. Joel Dunn, president and CEO of the nonprofit Chesapeake Conservancy, said the $3 million appropriation marks the first time the program has received the full amount authorized by Congress.

“Chesapeake Bay Gateways are the places to experience, first-hand, Chesapeake life and culture. Gateways are the Bay’s hidden treasures — each communicating a unique relationship and story of the Chesapeake. Gateways are parks, wildlife refuges, maritime museums, historic sites, and water trails. They are places you can go to volunteer, explore, enjoy, relax, learn, or simply renew your spirit.”

The Gateway sites also promote volunteer efforts in restoring the Bay, a strong part of environmental science education. But the sites don’t do that with textbooks; instead they provide “stunning waterfowl migrations, the quiet beauty of pristine landscapes, and an abundant wildlife population … as you explore and play in the Chesapeake region.”

Paul Katula is the executive editor of the Voxitatis Research Foundation, which publishes this blog. For more information, see the About page.

Recent posts

Feds boost Bay funding

Restoration efforts in the Chesapeake Bay watershed received a boost in federal funding in the budget Congress passed last month.

Md. & IL bands perform on New Year’s in...

Bands from IL and Md. once again entertained thousands of people who lined the streets of London and Rome on New Year's Day.

Howard Co. sounds an under-staffing alarm

Teachers in a Md. district have filed a grievance over missing planning and lunch periods and, as a result, putting the most vulnerable students at risk.

Top 11 school stories of 2019

We find these 11 stories to have the greatest potential for influencing activity and direction in schools for the near future.

Girls’ volleyball champs in Illinois

We congratulate the Illinois state champions in girls' volleyball: Newark, St Teresa, Sterling, & Benet Academy.

A weekend of ‘band geeks’ across America

The musical Band Geeks was in performance at a MD high school, just as marching bands from across America named a national champion.

2 dead, 3 wounded in Calif. school shooting

Another school shooting has resulted in the death of 2 California high school students. The suspect shot himself and is in custody.

Mercury makes a transit; next in 2032

A transit of Mercury occurred today and was visible from the US, provided you had sunny skies. It was one of longest possible transits.

On the Naperville BWW racist incident

A racist incident at a Naperville, IL, sports bar indicates that the threads of racism are strong, perhaps as strong as ever.

IL bill could excuse absences to vote

A proposed law in IL could give students up to two hours during the school day so they could vote in the upcoming election.

Loan forgiveness gains some bipartisan support

One Republican from GA, who used to work under Betsy DeVos at the US Education Dept, offers a plan to forgive some student loan debt.

LEAVE A REPLY

Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.