WASHINGTON, D.C. – U.S. Representatives Brian Mast (FL-18), Marcy Kaptur (OH-09), Dave Joyce (OH-14) and Suzanne Bonamici (OR-01) wrote a letter to Office of Management and Budget Director Mick Mulvaney urging the Trump Administration to fully fund all programs related to addressing harmful algal blooms in the upcoming Fiscal Year 2020 budget.
“We write to respectfully request that you allocate robust funding in the President’s Fiscal Year 2020 budget request for programs that address a widespread and ever-increasing problem: toxic algal blooms, also called harmful algal blooms (HABs),” the Members wrote. “Toxic algae affect marine, coastal, estuarine, and freshwater systems in all 50 states and all U.S. territories. A strong investment in programs that address toxic algae will help protect economic activity, the health of millions of Americans, and our environment.”
The letter, which was signed by a bipartisan group of 61 members, prominently features the destruction being caused by discharges from Lake Okeechobee:
“Toxic blue-green algae originating in Lake Okeechobee in Florida has fouled rivers and inland waterways leading to both coasts, wreaking havoc on the state’s tourism industry and threatening public health,” the Members continued. “This toxic bloom remains a continued threat to drinking water and commercial and recreational uses of waterways.”
Read the full letter here.