Great Lakes Commission urges Congress to include Great Lakes investments in stimulus
Ann Arbor, Mich. – In a letter sent yesterday, the Great Lakes Commission called on Congressional appropriators to include critical Great Lakes investments in any economic stimulus response to the coronavirus pandemic. The investments include modernizing outdated water infrastructure to protect drinking water and public health, fully funding the Great Lakes Restoration Initiative to clean up pollution across the region and supporting programs that help prevent harmful algal blooms and bolster producers and the Basin’s farm economy.
“With nearly one-third of U.S. and Canadian economies centered around the Great Lakes Basin, revitalizing the Great Lakes economy will accelerate and stabilize our national recovery,” the letter reads. “Congress has been a vital partner in efforts to maximize the Great Lakes as an environmental and economic asset for the region, the nation and North America. These investments will address important priorities while quickly stimulating economic activity in hard-hit communities.”
The investments reflect longstanding Great Lakes Commission priorities for strengthening the economic and environmental health of the eight-state region. They are aligned with the Commission’s Great Lakes 2020: Vision for a Healthy and Resilient Great Lakes Basin.
The Great Lakes Commission convenes the states and provinces—Illinois, Indiana, Michigan, Minnesota, New York, Ohio, Ontario, Pennsylvania, Québec and Wisconsin—to speak collectively for a healthy, vibrant Great Lakes Basin. Established by the Great Lakes Basin Compact and authorized by Congress, the Commission promotes, plans for, and invests in the use, development and conservation of the Great Lakes Basin.
The Great Lakes Commission, led by chair Sharon M. Jackson, Deputy General Counsel for Governor Eric J. Holcomb of Indiana, is an interstate compact agency established under the Great Lakes Basin Compact of 1955. The Commission is authorized by state and U.S. federal law and dedicated to promoting a strong economy, healthy environment and high quality of life for the Great Lakes-St. Lawrence Basin and its residents. The Commission consists of governors’ appointees, state legislators, industry and nonprofit leaders and agency officials from eight states and two provinces. Associate membership for Ontario and Québec was established through the signing of a “Declaration of Partnership.” The Commission maintains a formal Observer program involving U.S. and Canadian federal agencies, tribal authorities, binational agencies and other regional interests. The Commission office is in Ann Arbor, Michigan. Learn more at www.glc.org.