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EPA Approps Package Still Uncertain

Although both the House and Senate have made some significant strides in working through selected appropriations measures — Energy & Water, Agriculture, Legislative, Military Construction/Veterans, and Transportation/HUD have either been passed or are on the Senate calendar for action and Energy, Military Construction/Veterans and Agriculture are ready for House Floor Action — neither the House nor Senate schedule has a placeholder for Interior & Environment.  This status is worrisome because it means that EPA programs and funding will, once again, likely be managed through an omnibus appropriation.  Water program needs, such as those captured in the Needs Survey, will remain unaddressed since Omnibus funding cannot increase funding allocation levels over what was enacted in the previous fiscal year.  The situation is exacerbated since both chambers plan to begin the “August Recess” in the middle of July so that they can attend their parties respective National Conventions and begin their own reelection campaigns in anticipation of the November elections.