WASHINGTON (May 25, 2016) – Statement by National Cattlemen’s Beef Association President Tracy Brunner on the House Appropriations Subcommittee on Interior, Environment and Related Agencies mark-up of the fiscal 2017 spending bill:
“The spending bill marked up by the Interior Appropriations Subcommittee contained a number of priorities for cattlemen and women. Specifically this legislation would defund EPA’s ‘waters of the United States’ final rule. Cattle producers continue to voice their opposition to the flawed WOTUS rule and defunding by Congress would prevent our members and taxpayers from expending future resources on continued litigation. The bill also clarifies the agricultural exemptions in the section 404 permitting process and continues defunding of new regulations under the Clean Air Act and Greenhouse Gas reporting for manure management systems.”
Statement by Public Lands Council President Brenda Richards:
“Public lands ranchers were pleased to see several of our priorities addressed in the FY 2017 Interior spending bill. The bill maintains the one-year delay on further rulemaking or listing of the Greater Sage Grouse under the Endangered Species Act and blocks the President’s proposed administrative fee on top of the grazing fee that was already raised by 25 percent earlier this year. The bill also reduces funding for the Land and Water Conservation Fund at $322 million, restoring some responsibility and prioritizing state and local projects while reducing funding for land acquisition. We are pleased that Payment in Lieu of Taxes was fully funded, offsetting the loss of local tax revenue for public lands. Finally, the bill increases funding for wildfire suppression at $3.9 billion.
While these go a long way to meet the needs of the West, we were greatly disappointed to see that the bill did not include the broad bi-partisan language reining in the President’s abuse of the Antiquities Act.”