Building upon momentum inspired by the New York Times story about the appalling state of our nation’s waters, the US Transportation and Infrastructure Committee is going to hold a hearing on October 15 entitled: The Clean Water Act after 37 Years, Recommitting to the Protection of the Nation’s Waters. EPA Administrator Lisa Jackson has asked Cynthia Giles to speak at the hearing.
On Friday, T&I Chairman James Oberstar (D-Minn) lamented the quality of this nation’s drinking waters after nearly a decade of what he called “neglect” of clean water laws by the Bush Administration. Oberstar is the lead sponsor on the Clean Water Restoration Act – legislation that would replace the words navigable waters with waters of the United States. This would free up federal agencies to enforce the original CWA regulations.
It is expected that Giles, EPA’s Administrator for Enforcement and Compliance,will discuss the uncertainty the agency feels over jurisdiction in enforcing the Clean Water Act – the result of court decisions during the Bush Administration – and she should be emphasizing the need for restoring CWA protections to the pre-2001 levels with new legislation.
There are 15 Democrats from Great Lakes States and 11 Republicans on the T&I Committee. HOW expects all our Great Lakes Representatives to be at the hearing, engaged and hopefully supportive of the CWRA. The following Great Lakes Congressmen are on the committee, if you have time, let your lawmaker know you support CWRA.
Jerry F. Costello (D-Ill.), Jerrald Nadler (D-NY), Tim Holden (D-PA), Tim Bishop (D-NY), Dan Lipinski (D-Ill.), Jason Altmire (D-PA), Tim Walz (D-Minn.), Mike Arcuri (D-NY), Chris Carney (D-PA), John Hall (D-NY), Steve Kagan (D-Wisc.), Phil Hare (D-Ill.), John Boccieri (D-OH), Mark Schauer (D-Mich.), Mike McMahon (D-NY), Thomas Petri (R-Wisc.), Vern Ehlers (R-Mich.), Tim Johnson (R-Ill.), Todd Russell Platts (R-PA), Bill Shuster (R-PA), Jim Gerlach (R-PA), Charles Dent (R-PA), Jean Schmidt (R-OH), Candice Miller (R-Mich.), Robert Latta (R-OH), Aaron Schock (R-Ill.).