The House Appropriations Committee advanced a flawed and dangerous markup of the already insufficient Interior and Environment Appropriations bill. The markup includes several riders that threaten environmental and public health safeguards. Equally notable are amendments the committee rejected, which would have provided further oversight for EPA Administrator Scott Pruitt, whose tenure has been consumed by questions regarding his ethics and motives. In all, the bill amounts to a brazen attempt to degrade public protections and a failure to address the concern surrounding Scott Pruitt’s conduct.
The committee rejected proposed amendments that would have:
- Struck all anti-environmental policy provisions
- Removed problematic language from the Endangered Species Act
- Mandated full funding for the EPA Inspector General, who is responsible for looking into several of Pruitt’s possible infractions and has made public the need for greater resources
- Required that Pruitt publish details of travel within 10 days of any trip
- Denied funds for EPA’s disastrous censored science program.
“Once more, the committee showed its true stripes: by refusing to support amendments that would provide oversight and transparency for a renegade Administrator in Scott Pruitt, while also pushing forward riders that will make our air, water and land more toxic, the committee is affirming that it believes the bottom lines of polluter allies are more important than the health of American people and the integrity of EPA.
“The committee is falling in lockstep with Pruitt’s reckless agenda to cripple EPA and harm families and children. This bill is another attack on the commitment to science, transparency, conservation and rule of law that undergirds EPA and our country.”
- Elgie Holstein, Senior Director for Strategic Planning