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Sen. Brown Calls For Trump To Officially Fund Great Lakes Restoration

A docked boat is reflected in the algae-covered water of Lake Erie's Maumee Bay in Oregon, Ohio in this Sept. 15, 2017, file photo.
Paul Sancya
/
Associated Press
A docked boat is reflected in the algae-covered water of Lake Erie's Maumee Bay in Oregon, Ohio in this Sept. 15, 2017, file photo.

As Congress looks over President Donald Trump’s budget, Sen. Sherrod Brown (D-Ohio) is criticizing the administration for proposing a 90 percent cut to Great Lakes restoration funds.

While Trump backtracked on that proposal, Brown says that kind of cut indicates a larger problem. 

The president told a rally in Michigan that he plans to reverse his position and fully fund the Great Lakes Restoration Initiative back to $300 million. His budget initially proposed cutting that to $30 million.

Brown says those changes haven’t been made to the official budget. He adds that Trump’s position on Lake Erie is just another example of the administration’s neglect of environmental issues.

“There’s nobody that I see in this White House that stands up for safe drinking water or clean air,” Brown says. “There’s nobody that stands up for preserving wilderness. There’s nobody that stands up to take on one of the most important moral issues of our time, climate change.”

Sen. Rob Portman (R-Ohio) also called for Trump to reverse the proposed budget cut, and said he was glad to see the president decided to fully fund the program.

“The Great Lakes Restoration Initiative has been a successful public-private partnership that has been a critical tool in our efforts to help protect and restore Lake Erie,” Portman says.

Trump previously proposed eliminating funding for the Great Lakes in 2018, but Congress ignored his request and fully funded the project.