Great Lakes Commission recommends Congressional guidance for improving implementation of the Great Lakes Restoration Initiative

In a letter to Congress, Great Lakes Commission Chairman Jim Tierney has provided a series of recommendations for improving implementation of the Great Lakes Restoration Initiative (GLRI) and asked that it be incorporated as guidance in the Fiscal Year 2012 appropriations bills. In correspondence to the House and Senate appropriations committees, the Commission called for Congressional direction to U.S. EPA to strengthen coordination with the states and give them greater authority over how the GLRI is implemented. The Commission noted that the Great Lakes states know what the most important restoration priorities are and can direct resources to them efficiently. The Commission is urging Congress to direct U.S. EPA to

  • Strengthen coordination with the states and provide greater authority in implementing the GLRI;
  • Administer GLRI funding in a way that minimizes transaction costs and maximizes efficiency and on-the ground results;
  • Maintain the GLRI’s focus on existing priorities and on-the-ground actions;
  • Minimize nonfederal match requirements; and
  • Maintain base funding for existing programs.

The Commission’s complete recommendations are linked here.

The Commission also reiterated its FY 2012 funding priorities for advancing Great Lakes restoration and economic revitalization, urging federal appropriators to maintain funding for the GLRI and provide funding for the Clean Water and Safe Drinking Water State Revolving Fund programs. More information on the Commission’s regional advocacy program for the Great Lakes is available at www.glc.org/restore.

For immediate release: May 3, 2011
Contact: 
Matt Doss, Great Lakes Commission, mdoss@glc.org, office: 734-971-9135

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The Great Lakes Commission, chaired by James Tierney, assistant commissioner for water resources at the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation, is an interstate compact agency established under state and U.S. federal law and dedicated to promoting a strong economy, healthy environment and high quality of life for the Great Lakes-St. Lawrence region and its residents. The Commission consists of governors’ appointees, state legislators, and agency officials from its eight member states. Associate membership for Ontario and Québec was established through the signing of a “Declaration of Partnership.” The Commission maintains a formal Observer program involving U.S. and Canadian federal agencies, tribal authorities, binational agencies and other regional interests. The Commission offices are located in Ann Arbor, Michigan. Learn more at www.glc.org.

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