U.S. EPA seeks input on Great Lakes Restoration Initiative
The U.S. EPA is in the midst of a series of public meetings to provide information and solicit feedback on the Great Lakes Restoration Initiative. The Great Lakes Commission is assisting EPA by convening these forums.
On July 17 , in conjunction with the Federal Great Lakes Interagency Task Force, U.S. EPA released a draft Great Lakes Multi-Year Restoration Action Plan Outline to provide a starting point for discussions about the longer-term direction and focus of the Great Lakes Restoration Initiative (GLRI). Following the public meetings and comments, U.S. EPA expects to add information about how the GLRI will address specific high profile, basinwide issues, as well as critical but more localized issues. The agency is soliciting feedback on goals, objectives, measures, and actions to ensure they are tracking the right activities, setting appropriately ambitious goals, and measuring them correctly. The meetings began July 21 in Milwaukee, Wis., and will conclude August 4 in Duluth, Minn.
Public comments on the “Great Lakes Multi-year Restoration Action Plan Outline” are invited before August 19 and can be provided in one of three ways:
- in person at one of the public meetings
- online at www.epa.gov/greatlakes/glri/outreach.html; or
- by mail to USEPA Great Lakes National Program Office (G-17J), Attention: Anthony Kizlauskas, 77 West Jackson Blvd., Chicago, IL 60604.
The schedule of remaining meetings is as follows:
August 3, 2009, 5-7pm EDT
Kellogg Center Auditorium
55 South Harrison Avenue
East Lansing, MI 48824-1022
August 4, 2009, 4-6pm CDT
EPA Mid-Continent Ecology Laboratory
Gitchee Gumee Conference Center
6201 Congdon Boulevard
Duluth, MN 55804
On June 26, the House approved full funding ($475 million) for the Great Lakes Restoration Initiative. The day before the House vote, the Senate Appropriations Committee approved the GLRI at a funding level of $400 million. The full Senate is expected to take up the Interior and Environment appropriations bill after the August recess. Once the Senate passes its bill, a conference committee will be convened to work out differences between the House and Senate versions. Congress’s deadline for completing all of their appropriations bills is October 1. Constituents should encourage your senators and representatives to support full funding for the Initiative as it works its way through the conference committee.
For more information:
Contact: Tim Eder, firstname.lastname@example.org.