Palmetto Bay, Fla. – Eric Eikenberg, CEO of The Everglades Foundation, has issued the following statement in response to the tentative funding agreement reached by House and Senate appropriators as part of the year-end spending deal to include $200 million to the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers for Everglades restoration (the measure is expected to pass the House and Senate this week, in advance of Friday’s deadline for a possible government shutdown):
“If passed by both Houses and approved by the President, this agreement means that Everglades restoration is poised to receive full federal funding for only the second time in 20 years. It is a welcome and historic step that will accelerate completion of projects to reduce the discharge of algae-causing polluted water to our coasts and restore the flow of fresh water south through the River of Grass.
“House and Senate appropriators are wise to recognize that this $200 million, when combined with the dollar-for-dollar commitment by the state of Florida, is a sound investment in our economy, our environment and our public health.
“Full and consistent funding from both Tallahassee and Washington is critical to keep the conveyor belt of project planning, construction and completion on track. This federal funding agreement should persuade the Florida Legislature to join Governor DeSantis in his call for sustained, consistent funding for Everglades restoration and clean water projects of $625 million annually over the next three years.
“We appreciate President Trump’s request for full funding and compliment the work and support of our entire Florida Congressional delegation in standing fast to secure it, particularly our Florida appropriators: Senator Marco Rubio and Representatives Debbie Wasserman Schultz, Lois Frankel, Charlie Crist, Mario Diaz-Balart and John Rutherford.”