U.S. Representatives Brian Mast, Alcee Hastings, Debbie Mucarsel-Powell and Francis Rooney are leading a bipartisan push from Florida lawmakers to fully fund Everglades restoration and water quality infrastructure projects.
“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,” Rep. Mast said.
“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,” Rep. Mast added.
The group of Members led a letter to the chairwoman and ranking member of the Appropriations Committee requesting “the highest possible funding levels for the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers to work on Everglades restoration” and “$200M in the USACE Construction account for Additional Funding for Environmental Restoration or Compliance where SFER could compete for additional funding.”
Last year, this account was funded at $50 million and used to fund work on the C-44 project and Kissimmee River Restoration.
“With the authorization of EAA [Southern Storage Reservoir], along with the continued work on the overarching Central Everglades Restoration Project (CERP) which was authorized back in 2000, adequate funding and authorizations for new projects are needed to continue to build on this momentum,” the Members wrote in the letter.