(WASHINGTON, DC)—The Trump administration today proposed slashing next year’s funding for the Chesapeake Bay Program by more than 91 percent as part of its fiscal year 2021 budget. As part of the federal Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), the Bay Program coordinates the partnership of the federal government, the watershed’s six states, and the District of Columbia, providing critical financial support for restoring the Chesapeake Bay.
Only weeks ago, Congress overwhelmingly approved a budget deal that reversed the Trump administration’s proposed cuts and boosted Bay Program funding from $73 million in 2019 to $85 million this year. Yet the administration has once again ignored the broad, bipartisan support the program enjoys on Capitol Hill and proposed slashing its funding down to $7.3 million next year.
Following the budget announcement, Chesapeake Bay Foundation President William C. Baker issued this statement:
“This action continues President Trump’s assault on the Chesapeake Bay and clean water. The administration is already attacking many of the bedrock environmental protections vital to the health of local rivers, streams, and the Chesapeake Bay. With only five years to finish implementing the Chesapeake Clean Water Blueprint, this drastic cut could be the final nail in the coffin for science-based restoration efforts.
“We are making progress, but it is fragile and under constant assault by the Trump administration’s regulatory rollbacks. Improving water quality is essential not only for a healthy Bay, but for thriving farms, vibrant outdoor recreation, and clean drinking water for the region’s 18 million inhabitants.
“We look forward to partnering with bipartisan Bay champions in Congress to ensure the Chesapeake Bay Program gets the robust funding needed to restore this national treasure.”