The House Appropriations Subcommittee on Interior, Environment and Related Agencies held a markup Wednesday, 23 May 2007, on the fiscal year (FY) 2008 appropriations legislation that would fund the US Geological Survey (USGS), other Interior Department bureaus, the EPA (Environmental Protection Agency), and portions of the US Forest Service (USFS).

The subcommittee, chaired by Representative Norman Dicks (D-WA), would provide increases over the FY 2007 enacted level for the Department of the Interior ($262 million additional), the Environmental Protection Agency ($361 million additional), and the Department of Agriculture’s Forest Service ($102 million additional). The subcommittee recommended a $50 million increase for the USGS, which received roughly $983 million in FY 2007.

The subcommittee also proposed increases for the National Wildlife Refuge System, the Land and Water Conservation Fund, and the Neotropical Migratory Bird Act. Under the subcommittee’s proposal, the National Wildlife Refuge System, which has experienced significant workforce reductions, would receive a $50 million increase; $55 million over the Administration’s FY 2008 request. As quoted by Congressional Quarterly, Chairman Dicks justified the proposed increases stating, “you can only reduce so far, and then you can’t do the job.”


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