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Friday, September 9, 2011

Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) FY2012 Appropriations: Overview of Provisions in H.R. 2584

Robert Esworthy
Specialist in Environmental Policy

On July 19, 2011, the House Appropriations Committee reported H.R. 2584 (H.Rept. 112-151) with $27.52 billion in appropriations for FY2012 for Interior, Environment, and Related Agencies. Title II of H.R. 2584 as reported would provide a total of $7.15 billion for the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), $1.82 billion (20%) less than the President’s FY2012 request of $8.97 billion, and $1.53 billion (18%) less than the FY2011 enacted appropriation of $8.68 billion. In addition to funding priorities among the various EPA programs and activities, H.R. 2584 as reported included more than 25 provisions that would restrict or preclude the use of FY2012 funds by EPA for implementing or proceeding with a number of recent and pending EPA regulatory actions. In addition, nearly 250 amendments, including several regarding EPA, were under consideration during floor debate which was suspended on July 28, 2011. As of the date of this report, the Senate Appropriations Committee had not reported a FY2012 appropriations bill for Interior, Environment, and Related Agencies.

Several EPA regulatory actions have been the focus of considerable attention during House and Senate oversight committee hearings more broadly, as well as, during appropriations committee hearings and House floor debate of the FY2012 appropriations. The provisions included in H.R. 2584 as reported, and many of the floor amendments considered and pending, cut across the various environmental pollution control statutes’ programs and initiatives, such as those that address greenhouse gas emissions, hazardous air pollutants, particulate matter emissions, permitting of new source air emissions, water quality impacts of mountaintop mining operations, management of coal ash, lead-based paint removal, environmental impacts associated with livestock operations, financial responsibility with respect to Superfund cleanup, and stormwater discharge. Further, Title V of the committee-reported bill, “Reducing Regulatory Burdens Act of 2011,” included amendments to the Clean Water Act and the Federal Insecticide, Rodenticide, and Fungicide Act in response to EPA’s consideration of requiring permits under the Clean Water Act for point source discharges of pesticides in or near U.S. waters. Several of these EPA activities have also been included in other proposed legislation.

To date, House floor debate on H.R. 2584 has not been completed. This report provides a summary of funding levels for EPA accounts and program activities specified in H.R. 2584 as reported by the House Appropriations Committee. This report also identifies selected provisions regarding EPA program activities as presented in the reported bill. Only those provisions that are clearly identifiable by specific language or references contained in the bill are included. Amendments that were voted on and pending during initial floor debate at the end of July 2011 are not included. The information presented throughout this report is primarily an extraction of the bill language for purposes of reference and is not intended to provide a comprehensive analysis of all provisions in H.R. 2584 as reported that may directly or indirectly affect EPA programs if enacted.

Date of Report: August 31, 2011
Number of Pages: 27
Order Number: R41979
Price: $29.95

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