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E-M:/ ACTION NEEDED TO STOP SNEAK ATTACK



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Enviro-Mich message from anne.woiwode@sfsierra.sierraclub.org
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ENVIRO-MICH: 

Michigan's Senators and Congressional Reps NEED to HEAR that this cowardly 
way of passing outrageous attacks on environmental protection standards 
must not be used!  Please help shine a spotlight on these sleazy, back door 
tactics to undercut environmental policies!  In addition, we have seen our 
own legislators in Michigan begin to adopt the same, underhanded 
strategies, particularly with the timber mandate passed for the past four 
years on the DNR budget -- this is bad government!   AW
     
     
     
URGENT: TELL CONGRESS TO STOP PASSING ANTI-ENVIRONMENTAL RIDERS
     
Last week, in a dead-of-night, backroom deal, Members of Congress slipped two 
anti-environmental riders into a must-pass appropriations bill.  One rider 
prevents the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) from implementing 
important rules to help clean up the nation's water (the rider blocks completing
long-awaited Total Maximum Daily Load rules that would require the development 
of plans to curb pollution in waters that
fail to support swimming, fishing and aquatic habitat).  The other rider exempts
a sprawl inducing highway project -- the reconstruction and widening of
Wilson Bridge, which crosses the Potomac River south of Washington, D.C. -- from
federal
requirements that funds be committed before construction projects begin.
     
In an outrageous abuse of legislative process, these two riders were added to a 
completely unrelated House-Senate conference report that contains, among other 
provisions, emergency funds for fire and flood victims.  There was no 
opportunity for debate on the merits of these riders or any possibility of 
amendment to strip them.  Members could only vote for or against the entire 
conference report.  Because of the emergency funding measures in the bill, rider
sponsors are banking on President Clinton signing the bill despite the riders in
it.  We are urging a Presidential veto to force the Congress to send him a clean
bill with no unrelated riders.
     
If we don't stop them, Members of Congress will continue to sneak additional 
anti-environmental riders into these must-pass spending bills during the next 
several weeks. Voting on these bills could be as early as the week of July 10, 
when they return from July 4 recess.  We anticipate that upcoming appropriations
bills could become
vehicles for the following riders, to name just a few:
     
-- The Senate Interior Appropriations could be amended to derail the 
Administration's Wild Forest/Roadless initiative; stop the Park Service from 
protecting National Parks from snowmobiles; allow damaging grazing on public 
lands without environmental review; and hamper US participation in international
activity on climate change.
     
-- The Senate Agriculture Appropriations bill could include a rider to prevent 
long-overdue reform of the Army Corps of Engineers.
     
-- Riders could be added to the Senate VA-HUD, Independent Agencies 
Appropriations bill to prevent the EPA from setting more protective standards 
for arsenic in drinking water, requiring cleanup of sediments contaminated with 
toxic chemicals, and listing counties that fail to meet new smog standards.
     
PLEASE TELL YOUR MEMBERS OF CONGRESS TO OPPOSE ALL ANTI-ENVIRONMENTAL RIDERS
     
Please call your Senators and Representatives at 202-224-3121.  Tell them that 
it's unacceptable to attach anti-environmental riders to appropriations bills.
     
     


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