|From the Desk of Kim Coble
|CBF Vice President of Environmental Protection and Restoration Kim Coble. Photo by CBF Staff.
What You Need to Know from the Hill
CBF is working to ensure the Farm Bill continues to fund critical assistance for Bay farmers. Bay state senators have done a good job designing a program known as the Regional Conservation Partnership Project to provide targeted assistance to areas of critical need.
Now, the Chesapeake Bay Task Force in the House of Representatives is working to encourage the House to do the same. Led by Representatives Van Hollen (MD), Wittman (VA), Scott (VA), and Harris (MD), the task force is asking the House Committee on Agriculture to ensure the new program mirrors the Senate's proposed program.
This program provides targeted conservation funding for natural resource issues, leverages private resources, and gives particular attention to areas of critical need. We believe the Senate version of the program will provide the targeted federal support needed to achieve significant conservation gains in areas of critical need, including the Chesapeake Bay watershed.
If you have a chance, be sure to thank these members for their support for farmers in our region, and for working for the strongest possible program to meet their needs.
Federal funding for Bay programs continues to be very important to reaching our Chesapeake Clean Water Blueprint goals. Through the appropriations process, Congress actually authorizes agencies to spend money through existing programs. In the coming months, starting in March, we will be working to ensure appropriators understand the importance of particular federal programs—such as the Chesapeake Bay Program and the Clean Water State Revolving Fund—for the Blueprint.
Building Congressional Support for the Blueprint
CBF members have many personal reasons for why they love the Bay and the rivers and streams that feed it. This year, we are working to help members of Congress in the Chesapeake Bay Caucus see and hear from the many stakeholders in the Bay who treasure it and depend upon it. In March, our outreach staff from Maryland, Virginia, and Pennsylvania will be on the Hill visiting all the Bay member offices to let them know how important clean rivers and streams are to CBF members throughout the watershed.