Monday, October 23, 2017

Politicos Beg for the Bay Journal

From the Bay Journal itself: MD senators call on EPA to reverse Bay Journal decision
Warning that its decision to cut grant funding for the Bay Journal sets a “dangerous nationwide precedent,” Maryland’s two U.S. senators asked Environmental Protection Agency Administrator Scott Pruitt to reverse his agency’s action in a letter Wednesday.

Sens. Ben Cardin and Chris Van Hollen said the Bay Journal has “done a sterling job of delivering returns on investments,” and that there was “no legitimate cause to deprive the residents of the Chesapeake Bay watershed of such a vital source of information.”

In the letter, the two Democratic senators said that “we are aware of no other examples of high-performing grantees having their EPA funding revoked under similar circumstances, meaning that this action sets a dangerous nationwide precedent.”

On Aug. 23, the EPA unexpectedly notified Bay Journal Media, the nonprofit organization that publishes the Bay Journal, of its intent to revoke a six-year award after only two years of funding because of an unexplained “shift in priorities.”
This could be "Reason #5753 That Trump Was Elected"
The senators said any notion that Congress has shifted its priorities regarding the Chesapeake Bay “could not be further from the truth.” While the White House has proposed eliminating funding for EPA’s Chesapeake Bay Program, the senators noted that the Senate Environment and Public Works Committee this summer voted to reauthorize the Bay Program at $90 million — the highest amount ever approved.

The senators noted that the Bay Journal supports the mission of state-federal agreements signed by state governors and previous EPA administrators in 2000 and 2014 which — like federal statutes establishing the Bay Program — call for promoting public information, education and stewardship as part of the Bay restoration effort.

“The mission of Bay Journal Media is directly in line with the priorities of the Congress and other elected officials throughout the Chesapeake Bay Watershed,” the letter stated.

They noted that the EPA’s most recent grant review praised the Bay Journal for “continued outstanding work.”
Although I use it quite a lot, the Bay Journal has always irritated me because it acts as a paid mouthpiece for the EPA and NOAA in the Bay region. From their "About us":
Publication is made possible through grants from the EPA Chesapeake Bay Program Office, the Campbell Foundation for the Environment, the Town Creek Foundation, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration Chesapeake Bay Office, the Chesapeake Bay Trust, and by donations from individuals.
Although they add:  "Views expressed in the Bay Journal do not necessarily reflect those of any governmental or grant-making organization." it's rare indeed when they differ significantly from their master's voice.

So there are private sources they could tap? Go for it!

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