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E-M:/ EPA News Release on GL Legacy Funding



 
 
Gildo M. Tori
Director of Public Policy
Ducks Unlimited - Great Lakes/Atlantic Region
331 Metty Dr. #4
Ann Arbor, MI 48103
734-623-2000
FAX 734-623-2035
gtori@ducks.org
>>> EPANEWS <loving.wanda@epamail.epa.gov> 2/4/2005 1:30:21 PM >>>
News for Release:  Friday, February 4, 2005

               U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA)

  President's 2006 Budget Request More Than Doubles Great Lakes Legacy
                                Funding

    Contact: Cynthia Bergman 202-564-9828 / bergman.cynthia@epa.gov

(Washington, D.C. ? February 4, 2005) President Bush is requesting $50
million in the FY 2006 Budget to implement the Great Lakes Legacy Act.
This is an increase of nearly $28 million and more than doubles the
level funded by Congress in FY 2005.

"Ensuring the health of the Great Lakes is a high priority for this
administration," said Ben Grumbles, assistant administrator for the
Office of Water.  "The president is requesting this substantial increase
in the funding to support the commitment to leave the Great Lakes better
than we found them."

Some of this money will help continue the remedial work at one of the
major Great Lakes Legacy Act projects ---the Black Lagoon---located near
Trenton, Michigan.  Dredging and disposal of approximately 73,400 cubic
yards of the contaminated sediment is currently under way.  The dredging
will be followed by spreading layers of sand and gravel over the
affected area.  Restoring the aquatic habitat within the Black Lagoon
and preparing the site for recreational and economic redevelopment are
the beginnings of  revitalizing this valued area.  Removing the
contamination in this riverbed and providing a natural process for
keeping it healthy mean every drop of water flowing through the lagoon
will be cleaner.

The natural beauty of the Great Lakes is only one aspect of this vital
national treasure.  More than 30 million Americans located in cities and
communities around the Great Lakes depend on the Great Lakes for their
drinking water.  The five Great Lakes make up the largest surface
freshwater system on earth and are home to more than  $1 billion dollars
in the recreational fishing industry.  Restoring and making the Great
Lakes cleaner is essential to support the culture and ways of native
communities.  The Lakes support  billions of dollars in shipping, trade,
and fishing and provide food and recreational opportunities for millions
of Americans.

President?s Executive Order 13340 is, in part, being implemented through
a large-scale collaboration among the federal government, the Great
Lakes states, local communities, tribes and others in the Great Lake
region.  The collaboration is working toward a December deadline for
presenting a plan that will focus the efforts of all toward making the
Great Lakes cleaner.

For additional information about the Legacy Act, the Black Lagoon, the
Executive Order and Great Lakes collaboration visit:
http://www.epa.gov/greatlakes