House Passes Interior-Environment Appropriations Bill To Fully Reopen National Parks
The House today approved, 240-179, legislation to reopen the Department of the Interior, the National Park Service, and the Environmental Protection Agency. The bill ensures that America’s National Parks can fully reopen and critical EPA operations can resume. It is the fourth bipartisan Senate bill that the House has passed this week to reopen key parts of the government and stop some of the most serious harms of the Trump Shutdown.
“The Trump Shutdown is now in its 21st day, and its harmful impacts on America’s families and communities are becoming clearer each day. There are few impacts more obvious than the damage being wrought at America’s partially shuttered National Parks, which is why we voted to reopen these national treasures,” House Appropriations Committee Chairwoman Nita M. Lowey said. “This week, the House has done its job and passed four bipartisan Senate bills to reopen key parts of the government. It is now up to Senator McConnell and Senate Republicans to vote for bills they have already supported and end the Trump Shutdown.”
The legislation, which is virtually identical to legislation that passed the Senate in August 2018 on a 92-6 vote, ensures that all agencies covered by the Interior, Environment, and Related Agencies appropriations bill will remain open through September 30. The bill provides $35.9 billion in discretionary funding, $6 billion above the President’s budget request and $601 million above the FY2018 enacted level.
The bill rejects President Trump’s proposed $1.9 billion budget cut to the Environmental Protection Agency. It also rejects more than $1 billion in proposed cuts to the Bureau of Indian Affairs, the Bureau of Indian Education, and Indian Health Service. In addition, the bill rejects President Trump’s proposed elimination of the Land and Water Conservation Fund (LWCF), the National Endowment for the Arts (NEA) and the National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH).
Finally, the bill includes back pay for federal employees working without pay or furloughed during the Trump Shutdown.
For the text of H.R. 266, please visit: https://www.govinfo.gov/content/pkg/BILLS-116hr266ih/pdf/BILLS-116hr266ih.pdf