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THE PRESIDENT'S ECONOMIC PLAN:
PROTECTING THE ENVIRONMENT
The President proposes to protect the environment and our natural
resources, but still save money by focusing funds on legitimate
Federal functions, cutting or eliminating lower- priority programs,
and increasing the use of user fees. Republicans would jeopardize the
environment by eliminating funds for constructing municipal wastewater
and drinking water facilities, ending the acquisition of land for
national parks and forests, and cutting park and forest budgets by 10
percent below 1995.
The President proposes to consolidate the Clean Water and Safe
Drinking Water State Revolving Funds that make loans for municipal
wastewater and water treatment construction, giving States more
flexibility in meeting local priorities. He would reduce funding over
time to $1.5 billion a year as States gain access, as a permanent
source, to the repayments of previous loans.
The Senate would eliminate these programs by 1998; the House
would provide less funding than the President.
The President proposes to increase funding by $265 million a year
by 2002 for the Environmental Protection Agency's operating program,
the backbone of our efforts to protect the environment. This increase
comes after $150 million in savings due to streamlining and decreased
EPA oversight of State delegated programs. The operating program
increases address global climate change, promote development and
export of environmental technology, and protect sensitive ecosystems.
Republicans would eliminate the program to develop
environmental technologies that improve the environment at
lower cost while opening new export markets, and terminate
funding for programs that protect water quality and preserve
habitat for ducks and fish.
The President proposes increases each year for National Park
operations and rehabilitation in order to maintain parks and their
Republicans would cut national park construction by half, and
park operations by 10 percent, the latter of which would strain
the National Park Service's ability to keep parks open and up
The President proposes to phase-down spending on Federal land
acquisitions to $100 million a year, focusing on high-priority
projects and the expanded use of land exchanges.
Republicans would terminate Federal land acquisitions.