March 23, 2015
Washington, DC – Last week, Congressman Donald Norcross (NJ01) voted to oppose two bills advanced by the Republican-led U.S. House of Representatives intended to restrict the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) from doing its job of protecting public health and the environment.
The two bills make disturbing changes to the EPA. H.R. 1030, titled the Secret Science Reform Act, restricts the EPA from using the best available scientific information when writing policy. As written, this legislation prevents the EPA from relying on all sources of credible scientific data, even data that is legally protected from public disclosure or extremely costly to produce. H.R. 1029, entitled the EPA Science Advisory Board Reform Act, attempts to weaken and distort the panel of experts that advises the EPA when establishing regulations by limiting the participation of academic scientists on the board.
“These bills claim to make the EPA’s work more transparent, but in reality they will simply roll back decades of progress the agency has made in protecting our health and our environment,” said Congressman Norcross. “The EPA performs many vital functions in New Jersey, helping to keep the Jersey Shore beautiful to keeping our air clean and drinking water clear. The EPA, like any organization, deserves access to the best information and the best experts available to inform their decisions. These bills apparently take the opposite position, and I cannot support them.”
The President has threatened to veto the legislation, and Congressman Norcross remains committed to ensuring that our environmental policies do not block the EPA from doing its job of protecting our health and wellbeing.