As a concerned citizen, resident and lover of Door County, I am writing to urge you to consider writing an article about the proposed cuts to the EPA, focused particularly on how such cuts would affect the Great Lakes Restoration Project.
The National Association of Clean Air Agencies confirmed on March 2 that an initial proposal from the White House Office of Management and Budget calls for the Great Lakes Restoration Initiative to be cut from $300 million a year to about $10 million.
I, like many in Door County, make at least part of my income from a clean, well-managed, restored Lake Michigan. This is a part of our culture and a critical part of our economy and our home. All of us in Door County have benefited from the Great Lakes Restoration Initiative and have much to lose if the proposed budget cuts go through. We all know that Door County does not sit alone, and our water is affected by policies that reach across the Upper Midwest. What happens on the lakeshore in Chicago plays out on the beaches of Peninsula State Park.
Wisconsin is a critical player in the drama unfolding in Washington. Paul Ryan is highly influential and answers to the people of Wisconsin. We need jobs and for us in Door County, this means clean, protected water. It means restoration and protection of wetlands and shoreline. It means fighting invasive species like zebra muscles and Asian carp, zealously guarding our drinking water, and maintaining an ecosystem that can support both tourism and industry safely.
The current budget proposal is still being debated. Now is the time to let Paul Ryan and our other representatives know that we here in Door County are paying attention to the water. Whatever other political beliefs the people of Door County may hold, we all depend on the lake and we should all be concerned when projects that uphold and enhance the health and well being of the lake are threatened. Many residents and visitors depend on the Pulse as a source of important local news. Again, I urge you to bring this important issue to the attention of your readers and let them decide for themselves.
Thank you for your continued quality reporting and your dedication to the people of this community.
Dr. Andrea Conger