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The Great Lakes Task Force is circulating letters for signature by Great
Lakes Congressionals asking conferees to support important Great Lakes
programs in jeopardy during the Appropriations conferences. If you are
interested in any of the following programs, contact your Senators and
Representatives, asking that they have their staff contact Senator Glenn or
Rep. Latourette to sign on to the letters before August 12.
The 4 letters include the following programs:
The Senate provided an increase of $800,000 for the Great Lakes
Environmental Research Lab (GLERL) a total base budget of $6 million. The
House provided only $5.2 million.
The Senate provided $2 million for NOAA's leadership of the Aquatic
Nuisance Species Task Force and Ballast Water Demonstration Program. The
House provided no funding for these programs.
The House provided $55 million for the National Coastal Zone
Management Program. The Senate provided only $49.7 million. We are happy
to report that both levels are above the fiscal 1997 funding level of $46.2
The following programs also received funding increases at different
levels in the House and Senate:
House: $14 million
Fiscal 1997: $11.7 million
National Sea Grant:
House: $55.3 million
Senate: $58 million
Fiscal 1997: $54.3 million
Sea Grant Research on Aquaic Nuisance Species:
House: $2.8 million
Senate: $2 million
Fiscal 1997: $2.8 million
The Senate earmarked a $1 million increase for Coast Guard Research
and Development to be used to "further research efforts into a nonchemical
interim ballast-management practice for fully loaded vessels to prevent the
ballast-mediated transfer of species. This research should focus in
particular on vessels reporting no ballast on board (NOBOB) ...[and] to
assist the Coast Guard's other efforts consistent with the National
Invasive Species Act"
The House did not provide similar funding.
Approximately 90% of the vessels entering the Great Lakes fit the NOBOB
ENERGY AND WATER
The Senate provided $6 million for Dredging Operations
Environmental Research. The House provided only $2 million. Our letter
also reiterates the GLTF request that the conference report language
explicitly make projects dealing with the assessment and remediation of
contaminated sediments eligible for funding through the contaminated
sediments and innovative technologies focus areas.
The House provided $500,000 for RAP assistance. The Senate did not
provide funding for this program.
Both bodies provided funding for the construction of a dispersal
barrier at the Chicago Ship and Sanitary Canal. The Senate provided
$500,000 through the research account and the House provided $500,000
through the Construction account. The different funding strategies will
have to be resolved in conference in order to maintain funding for the
The House provided $500,000 for Sediment Transport Modelling and
Sediment Management Planning. The Senate provided no funds for this
The Senate provided $6.6 million for Aquatic Nuisance Plant Control
Research. The House provided only $2.6 million. We note that funding of
at least $4 million will be needed in order for the Corps to develop new
research areas to address Elodea in Lake St. Clair and Eurasian
The House provided $200,000 for improvement of the Soo Locks. The
Senate did not provide for this project.
VA, HUD, and INDEPENDENT AGENCIES
The House provided $14.7 million for the Great Lakes National
Program Office. The Senate provided only $13.3 million for this program.
The House provided $250,000 for EPA design of the dispersal barrier
in the Chicago Ship and Sanitary Canal. The Senate provided no funds for
the EPA portion of this project.
The House provided $110 million for the combined Section 319
Nonpoint Source Grants and Clean Lakes Program, with specific language
designating that funds be made available to support the purposes of the
Clean Lakes Program. The Senate provided only $100 million, with no
mention of the Clean Lakes Program.
Thank you for your support of the Lakes!
Rochelle Sturtevant, Coordinator, Senate Great Lakes Task Force
Office of Senator Glenn 202-224-4229
Office of Senator Glenn 202-224-0388
Office of Representative LaTourette 202-225-5731