For Immediate Release October 21, 1999 Contact: Joan Moody 202-682-9400 x220 (Media) Mary Beth Beetham 202-682-9400 x237 (Development)
Statement of Rodger Schlickeisen President, Defenders of Wildlife on Passage of Interior Appropriations Bill
Its sad day for the environment and the democratic process when the U.S. House of Representatives passes a bill that uses the appropriations process not only to deny future generations the land and water legacy that they deserve but also to undermine the laws that currently protect our wildllife and wildlands. This bill is veto-bait loaded with riders to allow extensive dumping of toxic mining waste on public lands, allow grazing on public lands without appropriate environmental review, deny funds for grizzly reintroduction, allow logging without adequate wildlife surveys, and permit many other assaults on the environment. The bill also provides less than a third of what the President requested for Lands Legacy, despite bipartisan support for expanded Land and Water Conservation Fund programs and funding. Every major environmental group opposes this bill; we urge the President to veto it and keep sending it back to Capitol Hill until Congress gets it right.
NOTE TO REPORTERS: A complete list of anti-environmental riders on the Interior appropriations bill and other bills, compiled by Defenders of Wildlife for the conservation community, can be found at www.defenders.org by clicking on the section on FY 2000 appropriations.