Former EPA Officials Analyze Impacts of Budget Cuts

March 22, 2017 – A newly formed bipartisan group of 75 former employees of EPA and related federal and state agencies has completed an analysis of the impacts of the Administration’s proposed budget for FY 2018, concluding that “[t]he Trump Budget Blueprint for EPA appears to be nothing less than a full-throttle attack on the principle underlying all U.S. environmental laws – that protecting the health and environment of all Americans is a national priority.”  The group – the “Environmental Protection Network” – based its analysis on the Administration’s Budget Blueprint (March 16, 2017) and information contained in the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) “passback” document for FY 2018.  The group’s report addressed the impacts of the proposed cuts and provided historical background and perspective on some of the environmental programs.  The report indicated that the proposed FY 2018 budget for EPA of $5.7 billion, when adjusted for inflation, is at a level not seen since the mid-1970s just after the agency was formed and the proposed reductions to staff would bring the agency to its lowest level since 1984.  However, since those times, Congress has expanded the agency’s mandate in nearly every program.  The analysis concluded that the cuts are so far-reaching that nearly every activity will be affected, including the protection of air, water and climate from pollution, enforcement of environmental requirements, cleanup of Superfund sites, and analysis of chemicals and pesticides.  The report also noted that the proposed reductions in state grants “would set states up for costly failure” because there are sanctions if states do not meet federal standards within a certain timeframe.  “These sanctions apply regardless of whether the state agency have been adequately funded,” the report states. The group also issued a press release to accompany the analysis.