CONGRESSMAN ENI F.H. FALEOMAVAEGA American Samoa U.S. House of Representatives Washington, D.C.

NEWS RELEASE March 2, 2001


Congressman Eni Faleomavaega announced today that the budget blueprint released by the President proposes to reduce the budget for the Department of the Interior to $10.2 billion, a reduction of $400 million from current year funding.

"The President has only released a broad outline of his proposal for next year's budget," said Faleomavaega. "We are not expecting the details of where within the Department the cuts will come for another month."

"We do know the budget provides a substantial increase for the Land and Water Conservation Fund, and for maintenance and construction for the National Park Service. We will have to carefully inspect the detailed budget when it is released to make sure these increases do not come at the expense of our operations funding and our CIP money," explained the Congressman.

No cuts were specified for programs within the Department of the Interior, but aides said deep cuts could be expected for the U.S. Geological Survey and the Bureau of Land Management. Other increases which were identified within the summary were the wild land fire program, studies for issuing oil and gas leases in the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge, a reserve for National Emergencies, and several American Indians programs.

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