Published since 1946
House Subcommittee Passes Interior Appropriations Bill
The House Interior and Environment Appropriations Subcommittee passed their fiscal year 2018 spending bill on July 12 by a voice vote. The legislation funds most natural resource related agencies, and while there are cuts from the FY2017 omnibus spending bill that was enacted in May, the cuts are not as deep as those proposed by the Trump Administration. Overall, the Department of the Interior is funded at $11.9 billion, a drop from $12.3 billion in the FY17 bill, but an increase from the $11.7 billion in the Trump budget. The bill includes level funding of $68.9 million to the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) to continue landscape level conservation efforts for sage-grouse. In addition, the bill provides $275 million for the Land and Water Conservation Fund, an increase of $211 million from the president’s request. Wildfire suppression and fighting is funded at $3.4 billion, the 10-year average in suppression costs for the Department of the Interior and U.S. Forest Service.
“The agencies funded in the Interior and Environment Appropriations bill do important work protecting public lands, the air we breathe, and the water we drink,” said Interior Subcommittee Chairman Ken Calvert (R-CA) in a statement. “Our subcommittee prioritized proven programs that have a meaningful impact to achieve these goals while also ensuring our economy can continue to grow. I’m particularly pleased that we were able to provide significant funding for our increasingly popular National Parks and the Clean Diesel program, and ensure the development of the USGS earthquake early warning system can continue.”