Van Hollen Introduces Bipartisan Legislation to Assist Farmers with Chesapeake Bay Clean-Up
16 Cosponsors from the Across the Region Join Effort to Bring Vital Conservation Funds to the Bay
On Friday Maryland Congressman Chris Van Hollen, Co-Chair of the Congressional Chesapeake Bay Caucus, introduced legislation to provide needed federal funding for the Bay clean-up effort. The Chesapeake Bay Watershed Fairness Act will allocate resources to farmers to improve water quality and farm viability.
Joining Van Hollen in introducing the legislation were the other Congressional Chesapeake Bay Caucus Chairmen: Congressman Robert Wittman (R-VA), Congressman Robert C. “Bobby” Scott (D-VA), and Congressman Andy Harris (R-MD), as well as many others from across the region: Congressman Steny Hoyer (D-MD), Congressman Roscoe Bartlett (R-MD), Congressman Elijah Cummings (D-MD), Congressman Dutch Ruppersberger (D-MD), Congressman John Sarbanes (D-MD), Congresswoman Donna Edwards (D-MD), Congressman Frank Wolf (R-VA), Congressman Jim Moran (D-VA), Congressman Gerry Connolly (D-VA), Congressman Scott Rigell (R-VA), Congressman Todd Russell Platts (R-PA), Congressman Maurice Hinchey (D-NY), and Delegate Eleanor Holmes Norton (D-DC).
Congressman Van Hollen joined with his Bay State colleagues to lead the fight in the House to create the Chesapeake Bay Watershed Initiative in the 2008 Farm Bill, the first investment of its kind in conservation assistance for Bay farmers. In addition to continuing funding for that program, the new legislation would provide additional technical assistance to states and producers directly or through qualified individuals or organizations. Farmers could receive help to plan, implement, and maintain projects to reduce the nutrient and sediment losses that negatively impact the Bay.