by Lynn Thorp
Editor’s note: This post was updated with new links on 7.18.11
Yesterday, U.S. Representative Mike Simpson (R-ID) told reporters that the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) is “the scariest agency in the federal government.” That was after he cast a subcommittee vote for a spending bill that cuts EPA funding 18%. What’s more, the spending bill includes policy directives that don’t belong in spending bills. It’s just not effective way to run our government. Even worse, these directives block EPA’s mandated work to implement the law and protect our water, our air, our health and all the resources that enable us to thrive.
The full U.S. House of Representatives will vote on this spending bill in late July. But first, as early as next week, they’ll vote on whether to overturn energy efficiency standards for lightbulbs – standards that passed in 2007 with strong bi-partisan support.
But wait, that’s not all. A bill that would overturn important federal responsibilities for water protection remains on the House Majority Leader Cantor’s (R-NY) summer to-do list will also come to a vote soon. You can learn more about the bill we call a Temper Tantrum in Writing and tell your Senator to vote NO.
Some members of the U.S. House of Representatives seem to have collectively decided that contaminated drinking water isn’t scary, that increased asthma rates in children are not scary, that rising electricity costs and power plant pollution aren’t scary and that the disgraceful water pollution that led to passage of the Clean Water Act in 1972 isn’t scary either. For them, EPA doing the job Congress has set out for it and that the American people expect from it is the scary thing.
It’s a bit frightening to be sure, but don’t let that stop you from making your voice heard.