Avoiding government shutdown two weeks at a time not the way to go
President Obama told reporters last week that, "We can’t keep on running the government based on a two-week extension ... That's irresponsible". He was referring to the stopgap measures Congress is taking to keep the government running by extending what's known as a continuing resolution.
In the wake of the House Majority’s extreme budget bill, which made severe cuts to conservation, it’s clear that we need a better blueprint for the budget going forward. The Wilderness Society, working together with a host of other conservation groups, has created that blueprint with the release of the Green Budget.
If birds were humans, they would be pretty worried right now about the upcoming migration across America. The House voted for massive budget cuts to the agencies responsible for protecting the continental flyways on which wild birds depend.
Recently, the House of Representatives, led by the new Republican House Majority, debated and passed HR1, the Continuing Resolution for FY 11. This legislation is one of the most harmful to our environment in American history ever to pass a single chamber of the US Congress. An assault is being made on air, water, lands and wildlife that will irrevocably harm our health, our quality of life, and our economic recovery.
On Feb. 19, the House Majority — on a virtual straight party-line vote — passed an extreme budget bill, or continuing resolution,that if accepted by the Senate, will terminate funding for dozens of critical environmental programs and harm some of the nation’s bedrock conservation laws.
I was on the phone with Dan Bailey today. His family homesteaded in an area of Bridger-Teton National Forest called the Upper Hoback. When describing what it’s like to return home, driving north toward Bondurant, Wyo., and the southern gateway to Greater Yellowstone, Bailey told me: “You come over the rim, and it’s an incredible view. You can say, ‘I have arrived in Greater Yellowstone.’ You don’t need a sign to tell you something big has changed.”
The U.S. House of Representatives has voted to make drastic cuts to conservation spending through a continuing resolution it passed Feb 19. These initiatives would deliver crushing blows to wildlands, public health and to economic growth. We followed the debate by live blogging from the Hill. You can read that blog below.
The biggest threat to America’s favorite lands this week isn’t any axe in the forest – it’s the budget axe on Capitol Hill.
Congress could begin voting as early as Feb. 14 on a series of budget cuts that could decimate pristine forests, pollute our air and water, close national parks and wipe out funding for assessing threats caused by climate change.
Just before Thanksgiving, Interior Secretary Ken Salazar and Deputy Secretary David Hayes each talked about "wise” and “smart” planning for development of our nation’s renewable energy resources. Their comments were about a new program for off-shore wind in the Atlantic, but they could have just as easily been talking about on-shore wind and solar development.
This past Tuesday’s election delivered a message that is reverberating throughout the halls of Congress: Voters went to the polls and sent the message that partisanship and legislative gridlock are no way to manage the nation’s business. By delivering a divided Congress for the first time in 10 years, voters are not endorsing one party or the other — they are instead crying out for cooperation, compromise and a little common sense.