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Enviros call on Congress to fully fund Great Lakes Restoration Initiative

By Laura Weber, Michigan Public Radio Network

A group of environmentalists say the Great Lakes region would lose jobs and waterway restoration projects would suffer if the U.S. Congress does not fully fund the Great Lakes Restoration Initiative. Members of the Healing Our Waters coalition hope Congress will fund the restoration program at $300 million.

Jeff Skelding is with the coalition. He says their message to Congress is simple.

"Great Lakes restoration projects have improved the lives of millions of people in the Great Lakes region," he says. "These programs deliver results and maybe the best return on the dollar in the federal budget."

Skelding says there are undoubtedly lawmakers in Congress who would cut funds for Great Lakes restoration to save money in the federal budget. But he says anti-pollution projects have cleaned up drinking water and eliminated other health threats.

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