Browner Criticizes House's Markup of 2001 EPA Budget

It's little surprise that 18- to 34-year-olds are at the heart of a nationwide increase in illegal drug use, and the manufacturing industry traditionally draws heavily from this pool of job seekers.

The nation's public health and environment will be at risk if a July 26 markup of the Environmental Protection Agency's (EPA) 2001 budget isn't changed, EPA Administrator Carol M. Browner said.

"The bill robs environmental cops of any basic authority by cutting more than half of the funds for hiring the experts who are critical to investigating and prosecuting enforcement cases," Browner said after learning of details about the markup by the House Appropriations Subcommittee.

EPA's overall budget would be cut by $345 million and "earmarked" by congressmen for some 230 special projects in their districts, Browner contends. Cuts include an 80 percent reduction in the President's Clean Air Partnership Fund, which would make funds available to cities and states nationwide to solve their air pollution problems locally, and about $50 million eliminated from the Superfund program for toxic waste sites.

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