House Subcommittee Approves EPA Funding Bill for FY 2017

May 25, 2016 – The House Appropriations Subcommittee on Interior, Environment, and Related Agencies approved the FY 2017 appropriations bill that contains funding for EPA and reported it to the full Appropriations Committee.  The bill calls for a total of $7.98 billion in FY 2017 for EPA’s budget, as compared to the President’s request of $8.27 billion for the agency in FY 2017.  While the bill does not contain information for all of the specific programs in EPA’s budget (this information is typically included in report language, which has not yet been issued), it is expected that the bill will include $228.2 million for state and local air grants under Sections 103 and 105 of the Clean Air Act, which is equal to the FY 2016 appropriation and $40 million less than the President’s request.  Other provisions related to the air program include the following: 1) $100 million for grants under the Diesel Emission Reduction Act (DERA) program (compared to $50 million in FY 2016 and $20 million in the President’s request) (p. 78 of the bill); 2) $40 million for the Targeted Airshed Grant program (compared to $20 million in FY 2016 and $0 in the President’s request) (p. 78); 3) retention of funding for fine particulate matter monitoring under Section 103 authority, rather than transitioning to Section 105 authority as EPA proposed (p. 79); 4) prohibition on funds being used for Section 111(b) rules related to greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions from new fossil fuel-fired electric utility generating units (p. 144); 5) prohibition on funds being used for Sections 111(b) or 111(d) rules related to GHG emissions from modified, reconstructed or existing fossil fuel-fired electric utility generating units (p. 145); 6) postponement of the implementation of the 2015 ozone NAAQS by up to eight years (p. 150); 7) exemption of permitted sources from the 2015 ozone NAAQS under certain circumstances (p. 151); 8) prohibition on EPA using funds on rules or guidelines to address methane emissions in the oil and natural gas sector under Sections 111(b) or (d) (p. 151); 9) prohibition on the issuance of regulations calling for Title V permits for emissions from biological processes associated with livestock production (p. 138); 10) prohibition on the issuance of a rule that includes mandatory reporting of GHG emissions from manure management systems (p. 138); and 11) prohibition on EPA’s incorporation of the social cost of carbon into any rulemaking or guidance until a new Interagency Working Group revises the estimates (p. 149).  Also on Wednesday, EPA’s Deputy Chief Financial Officer issued a memorandum providing information on the FY 2017 bill, including tables summarizing the appropriation to EPA and 17 legislative riders related to EPA’s regulatory authority.