Funding for environmental agencies faces veto

Statement of Administration Policy

The Bush administration threatened to veto congressional appropriations for environmental and agricultural agencies, saying the proposed budget includes an irresponsible and excessive level of spending.

In a letter issued June 25 by the Executive Office of the President, the administration said it opposed a $22 billion budget increase for fiscal 2008 to spend on the Environmental Protection Agency and the Interior and Agriculture departments.

The appropriations bill — which was passed June 11 — would also shift $3.5 billion from Defense spending to the three agencies, which the administration opposes.

This is “inconsistent with the Democrats’ budget resolution and risks diminishing America’s warfighting capacity,” the administration states in the letter.

Specific parts of the proposed budget that the administration opposes include:
  • A $437 million increase to the Clean Water State Revolving Fund.
  • Funding that would go above the president’s budget boost for the Healthy Forests Initiative.
  • A provision that would allow the deepwater oil and natural gas leases in the Gulf of Mexico to be renegotiated.
  • The creation of the proposed Climate Change Adaptation and Mitigation Commission, which the administration says would be redundant with current agency efforts and the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change.
The administration disapproved of language that would “limit the Department of Interior from using competition as a management tool,” and said the bill would prohibit the Forest Service from using competitive sourcing.

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