The House Committee on Appropriations published their fiscal year (FY) 2014 Interior, Environment and Related Agencies appropriations bill this July. The bill met with strong opposition from House Democrats, who lambasted cuts that zero out approximately 20 programs and slash 34% from the Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) budget. The bill proposes $24.3 billion in total funding; $5.5 billion below FY 2013 levels, or 18 percent decrease. The Interior, Environment and Related Agencies Subcommittee has jurisdiction over many agencies, including the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS), the Bureau of Land Management (BLM), the National Park Service (NPS), and the President’s National Ocean Policy. The House bill includes $967 million for USGS, $101 million, or 9.5%, below FY 2013 levels; $989.3 million for the BLM, $76 million (7%) below FY 2013 levels; $2.3 billion for NPS, 9% below FY 2013 levels; and forbids funding the National Ocean Policy. After a contentious, 5-hour markup of the House bill the Committee adjourned further discussion until after the August recess.
The Senate has yet to consider an appropriations bill for Interior, Environment and Related Agencies.