This week, a bipartisan effort composed of Florida lawmakers is pushing to get the federal government to fully fund Everglades restoration and water quality infrastructure projects. This comes at a time when lawmakers in the sunshine state have placed emphasis on growing environmental concerns.
A number of sunshine state lawmakers from both sides of the aisle have provided commentary on why they are supporting the initiative, and now Florida Rep. Brian Mast is joining the conversation by sharing his ideas on why he supports the initiative and why the federal government must answer this call.
In a statement, Mast expressed that “the federal government needs to step up with a strong funding commitment for infrastructure projects that are critical to Florida’s environment, economy and public health, especially now that Governor DeSantis has made state matching funds for these projects a top priority.”
Furthermore, Mast informed that “we also cannot allow misguided red tape and bureaucracy to stand in the way of Everglades restoration, which is why we are requesting a $150 million increase in funding for the environmental restoration construction account that has been used by the Army Corps to fund projects like the C-44 Reservoir and Kissimmee River restoration.”
Finally, the Florida Congressman concluded that “this has bipartisan support and is absolutely critical to stopping harmful discharges, toxic algal blooms and the continued destruction of the Everglades.”
Mast is part of the bipartisan collective that directed a letter to the chairwoman and ranking member of the Appropriations Committee. The letter requests “the highest possible funding levels for the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers to work on Everglades restoration” along with “$200M in the USACE Construction account for Additional Funding for Environmental Restoration or Compliance where SFER could compete for additional funding.”
The letter was co-signed by 20 bipartisan members of the Florida delegation.