Agency envisions slashes in budget, programs at EPA

Katie RamirezMar 03, 2017

"I always took him very seriously when it came to his desire to dismantle the Clean Air and the Clean Water Act, and he's going to try to go through with it, " senator Brian Schatz (Democrat-Hawaii) said, The Hill reported.

Enck, who worked for a time as former Attorney General and Gov. Eliot Spitzer's environmental adviser, said Spitzer formed the template for state attorneys general suing the federal EPA, bringing court action 15 times against the Bush administration.

The Washington Post was first to report the staff and overall budget cuts, but the source disclosed new details on the impact the cuts would have on programs.

The former regional administrator of the EPA under President Obama, Judith Enck, says the new head of the EPA under President Trump, Scott Pruitt, threatens to roll back major environmental regulations, including climate change actions and pollution protections.

"These cuts, if enacted by Congress, will rip the heart and soul out of the national air pollution control program and jeopardize the health and welfare of tens of millions of people around the country", Becker said. "Those in industry should know how to allocate their resources to comply with the regulations passed by the EPA".

If the EPAs budget is cut as deeply as the administration is proposing, it would cut off a stream of funding to local governments that helps them comply with federal environmental laws and could hobble the EPAs efforts to enforce them. But regardless of the size of the budget cuts, President Donald Trump wants to preserve "pass-through" grants to states, which make up almost half the agency's budget, Ebell said in an interview.

If EPA funding to states dries up, states may lose the ability to monitor air and water quality, build clean water infrastructure and provide environmental information to the public, the council wrote. It remains unclear whether changes to environmental protections will look similar to what we have. According to Bloomberg, those policy reversals include the Clean Power Plan and the Waters of the US rule.

Myron Ebell, who led the EPA's transition team, said Monday that 24 percent "sounds a little steep".

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