Could it be, however, that Governor
McDonnell’s fellow Virginian, Congressman
Goodlatte (Dist. 6) may be deaf to Mr.
McDonnell’s call for federal involvement?
Less than three weeks after the governor’s
call, Mr. Goodlatte proposed an amendment
to federal appropriation
legislation that would
essentially gut EPA’s
authorities to spend
money on Bay restoration,
provide regulatory oversight, and impose consequences for failure.
amendment would allow
polluters to continue to
foul his own district’s
River, as well as the entire
Chesapeake Bay, widely recognized as a
national treasure. Studies show that thousands of jobs depend on clean water
throughout the Bay region. They are at risk.
Mr. Goodlatte’s proposed amendment has
not yet been considered, and at the time of
publication, CBF was anticipating no discussion or vote until sometime after Congress’s
Sherwood Boehlert wrote, “It’s not hard to
understand why leaving clean water policy
entirely to the states doesn’t work. First,
waters don’t follow state boundaries.
Pollutants that are put in the waters of one
state don’t stay in that state, and indeed may
do more damage downstream as pollutants
accumulate. A water policy that is, in effect,
based on the theory that ‘what happens in
Vegas stays in Vegas’ will fail pretty quickly.
Second, state politics often favor narrow
company interests at the expense of the
broader public. Companies can threaten to
move to other states, and state campaign
finance laws are often weak.”
region’s 17 million citizens for their own
profits by filing a legal challenge of the
TMDL. These are not the men and women
working the fields. No, these are influential
national lobbyists—the American Farm
Bureau Federation, The Fertilizer Institute,
the National Chicken Council, the National
Corn Growers Association, the National Pork
Producers Council, the National Turkey
Federation, the Pennsylvania Farm Bureau,
political action committees affiliated with
these groups have spent $11,554,872 on
campaign contributions to candidates for
federal office and related political activities.
and the U.S. Poultry &
Egg Association. Together,
these are heavy-hitting
national institutions that
employed 119 lobbyists
and spent a total of
$9,466,617 on lobbying
in 2009, the most recent
year for which data are
currently available, according to federal records.
Additionally, according to
the Federal Election
Commission, since 1996,
We will argue the facts.
The TMDL is well within
EPA’s legal authority. Pollution
reduction creates jobs whereas
pollution threatens them.
The House bill was sent to the Senate, but
there is no indication the Senate will take
action any time soon or likely at all.
But, still, it’s hard to imagine a Virginia
Congressman could oppose the federal government’s participation in saving the Bay, as
Congressman Goodlatte has repeatedly. As
he did back in February, he is again trying to
stop successful efforts to reduce Bay and
river pollution. And, he is not alone.
CBF commends those representatives—both
Republican and Democrat—who voted
against this damaging legislation and who
have proven that they understand that we
cannot have clean water without the full cooperation of the federal and state governments.
In mid-July, the House of Representatives
passed a piece of ironically named legislation,
the Clean Water Cooperative Federalism Act
of 2011 (H.R. 2018), that would leave water-pollution responsibilities in the hands of the
states alone and that constitutes nothing less
than the most damaging attack on the federal Clean Water Act in more than a decade.
Please see the sidebar on page 13 for a summary of Bay state representatives’ votes.
In the Courts
Those members of the House of Representatives
who voted in favor of the Clean Water
Cooperative Federalism Act of 2011 have
Save the Bay also reported that CBF has filed
a formal motion to intervene in the case in
support of EPA. We reported that several
other organizations including Citizens for
Pennsylvania’s Future, Defenders of
Wildlife, Jefferson County (West Virginia)
Public Service District, Midshore
Riverkeeper Conservancy, and National
Wildlife Federation joined us. Since then,
the Pennsylvania Municipal Authorities
Association and the National Association
of Clean Water Agencies—organizations
that represent numerous stormwater and
wastewater agencies—have filed their own
motions to intervene on behalf of the
Writing for The Huffington Post (July 13,
2011) in opposition to this legislation, for-
mer New York Republican Congressman
As Save the Bay reported to CBF readers this
summer, huge national agricultural industry
associations have proven themselves willing
to sacrifice the long-term good of this
In late June, the National Association of
Home Builders picked up the agricultural
lobbyists’ mantle, also suing the federal
government and asserting the same three
claims as in the agricultural industries’ alle-
gations. One of the three claims is that the
pollution budget was based on an imperfect
scientific model. The agricultural lobbyists,