Monday, December 17, 2007

Update On Funding For Wildlife Refuges I

On November 28 I posted about potential cutbacks to funding for National Wildlife Refuges. At the end of that post I exhorted you to call your elected officials and protest those cutbacks.

Today Refuge Watch posted, in part, the following

The National Wildlife Refuge Association — a nonprofit organization that acts as an advocate for the Refuge System — has just sent out an email alert that offers a promising update on the Capitol Hill budget deliberations:

This morning House leaders announced an omnibus spending package which included funding for the National Wildlife Refuge System (NWRS). Proposed funding for the NWRS is $434 million, a $39 million increase over FY07!

Thanks to your diligence and hard work, Congress has answered your calls for increased funding — and while perhaps not as high as we had hoped and advocated for, this is truly an enormous win in light of these tough budget times. However, there are still hurdles which must be cleared before the President signs this bill.

The House is expected to vote either tonight or tomorrow with the Senate following shortly thereafter. The Senate will add more spending and it will go back to the House for final approval before being sent to the President.

Please urge your U.S. Representative and Senators to support this bill –
the funding for refuges will likely mean a second round of refuge downsizing will not be necessary, or at least will be postponed. You can reach your members by calling the Capitol Switchboard at 202-224-3121.

When Senator Reid pulled the FISA bill this evening, he cited constituent pressure as one of the reasons for pulling the bill. That is further confirmation that constituent calls, faxes, and letters do make a difference!

I'll post updates as they become available.

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