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Frankel, Florida Delegation Secure $200 Million for Everglades

Bipartisan Florida delegation champions Everglades funding in Energy and Water Appropriations bill, which now heads to House floor

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Washington, DC, May 22, 2019 | comments

Today, Representative Lois Frankel (FL-21), a member of the Appropriations Subcommittee that wrote the legislation, released the following statement upon passage of the Energy and Water Development, and Related Agencies funding bill for Fiscal Year 2020 out of the House Appropriations Committee.

 

“Every day, millions of Floridians depend on our state’s beautiful natural ecosystem and today, we’re committing to taking care of our environment for generations to come,” said Rep. Frankel. “This bill will protect Florida’s Everglades and clean water, expand renewable and efficient energy programs, restore our beaches, and provide opportunities to grow Florida’s economy.”

 

The bill includes many provisions important to the health and prosperity of South Floridians; most significantly, the $200 million requested by the Florida congressional delegation for Everglades restoration.

 

Known as the river of grass, the Everglades is a 100 miles long natural region of tropical wetlands that is the main source of water for 8 million people in South Florida. It contains one of the nation’s most popular national parks. The State of Florida and the federal government are engaged in a long-term effort to restore its natural flow and improve water quality.

 

Other important funding allocations will add resources to restore our beaches, maintain our waterways, and potentially expand the port in Fort Lauderdale. The bill responsibly responds to the ever-growing challenge of climate change with a large increase for the Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy.

 

This year, the Energy and Water Development, and Related Agencies appropriations bill includes an overall $46.4 billion in funding, a $1.8 billion increase over current levels. As a member of this Appropriations subcommittee, Rep. Frankel advocated for an array of programs, including:

 

Army Corps of Engineers:

  • $200 million for Everglades Restoration, a $133 million increase from FY19 levels.
  • $50 million for Beach Restoration, maintaining funding from FY19 levels.
  • $7.36 billion for the Army Corps of Engineers, a $357 million increase from FY19 levels.
  • Six new construction starts for the Army Corps of Engineers.
    • Projects around the country, including Port Everglades, can compete for funding.  
  • Encourages the United States Army Corps to use best science when determining proper water levels for Lake Okeechobee, to ensure proper water supply for South Florida.
  • $223 million for Intracoastal Dredging, a $43 million increase from FY19 levels.
  • $1.697 billion for the Harbor Maintenance Trust Fund, a $147 million increase from FY19 levels.
  • $290 million for the Weatherization Assistance Program, a $36 million increase from FY19 levels.
  • $100 million for the Environmental Infrastructure program, which the Florida Keys Water Infrastructure project can compete for funding.

 

Department of Energy:

  • $2.65 billion for the Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy, an increase of $273 million FY19 levels, to provide for clean, affordable, and secure energy and ensure American leadership in the transition to a global clean energy economy.
  • $6 million for the US-Israel Cooperative Energy Center.
  • $200 million for the Office of Electricity, an increase of $44 million above FY19 enacted levels, to advance technologies to increase the resiliency and efficiency of our electricity delivery.
  • $6.87 billion for the Office of Science, an increase of $285 million above FY19 enacted levels, to support scientific research in physics, biology, chemistry, and other science disciplines.

 

Now that the legislation has passed out of committee, it will be brought to the House floor for a vote. Once the Senate passes its own bill, appropriators will reconcile the differences to then send the result to the President’s desk for a signature.

 

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