Good? Budget News...

Politico is reporting that the U.S. House of Representatives' Interior & Environment Appropriations Subcommittee "finalized a fiscal 2018 Interior and Environment spending package" with only "slight reduction in funds from current levels...."  Politico reports that the bill would give agencies covered by the spending bill, including EPA, "$31.5 billion for fiscal year 2018 compared to $32.37 billion in current funding."

While cuts to EPA's programs are likely to negatively impact environmental protection no matter how small they are (there's only so much "do more with less" that's possible), it's great that the Administration's ridiculous 31% budget cut is not being taken seriously even by the far more conservative U.S. House.

What is currently unsure is what will be the specific cuts to EPA. It is possible that the bulk of the cuts could still be taken from EPA, rather than the Department of the Interior, or other related agencies. The "other related agencies" include:  Advisory Council on Historic Preservation; Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry (HHS); Chemical Safety and Hazard Investigation Board; Commission of Fine Arts; Council on Environmental Quality and Office of Environmental Quality; Dwight D. Eisenhower Memorial Commission, Forest Service (USDA), Indian Health Service (HHS); Institute of American Indian and Alaska Native Culture and Arts Development; John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts; National Capital Planning Commission; National Foundation on the Arts and the Humanities (except Institute of Museum and Library Services); National Gallery of Art; National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences (Superfund-related activities); Office of Navajo and Hopi Indian Relocation; Presidio Trust; Smithsonian Institution; United States Holocaust Memorial Museum; and Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars.

Politico notes that a full Interior-EPA bill, complete with program-by-program budget breakdowns, is expected to be released ahead of Wednesday's 10:30 a.m. markup of the legislation in Rayburn 2359.