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Proposed zero funding of the National Sea Grant College Program

March 12, 2019

On March 11, 2019, the President submitted a proposed FY 2020 budget to Congress, and, again, it calls for zero-funding the National Sea Grant College Program, which includes Minnesota Sea Grant. Our program keeps coasts and communities healthy and strong and is fundamental to the protection and safe use of water resources throughout the Great Lakes region.

In preceding years, the actions of people, business, industries, and others who rely upon safe, clean water resources have encouraged the Congress to sustain and enhance funding of the Sea Grant Program. The Minnesota Sea Grant program provides a 10-fold direct return on federal investment to the people of Minnesota and delivers programs, actions, and impacts in every Congressional district. We hope that the people of Minnesota and across the United States will again voice their support and contact their Congressional delegations to request continued funding of Sea Grant and other programs important to sustaining the use of water resources.

Minnesota Sea Grant is here for our communities, businesses and industry, our teachers and students, and our visitors. Our educators have helped communities statewide manage flooding and stormwater runoff - an issue facing Minnesotans today - through training with our interactive Watershed Game Program tailored for local leaders and students. We estimate that policy actions taken by Watershed Game participants created $6.6M in economic benefit due to improved water quality in the St. Croix watershed. We train teachers by providing hands-on, shipboard, water science workshops with scientists that they can take back to their classrooms. We also help Minnesotans and visitors safely enjoy our Great Lake. Our ParkPointBeach.org website is the go-to safety information source for visitors to Duluth-area beaches. We are here to serve Minnesota.

Because of the demonstrated impact of our programs, the National Sea Grant Program has been solidly supported by both major political parties. No member of Congress wants people to have poor quality water. Minnesota Sea Grant is profoundly engaged in offering the best water science possible to the public, business, industry, communities, nongovernmental organizations, municipal, local and state governments and agencies, and others who need our services. If the water science people need does not exist, we engage and fund the research community to get that needed science.

If you would like to make a comment to members of Congress about the value of Sea Grant and request that they include the Sea Grant Program in their FY 2020 budget requests, you can find your House of Representative member at house.gov/representatives/find and your senators at senate.gov.

Sincerely,

John A. Downing
Director
Minnesota Sea Grant
downing@d.umn.edu
218-726-8715

Posted on March 12, 2019


This page last modified on March 12, 2019     © 1996 – 2019 Regents of the University of Minnesota     The University of Minnesota is an equal opportunity educator and employer.
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