Thursday, March 19, 2015

Which House Democrats Joined the GOP's Latest Attack on the EPA?

Tuesday, the House passed the EPA Science Advisory Board Reform Act of 2015, a bill to increase industry power over the EPA:
Under this bill, the EPA would be required to select members for the SAB that represent a “balanced” view of scientific issues, regardless of the legitimacy of those views – exposing the Board to potentially politically motivated beliefs not grounded in actual science. Additionally, the bill would allow up to 90% of SAB members to be private-sector scientists with direct ties to the industries – opening the door for corporations to hold powerful influence over its decisions and recommendations to the EPA.

The bill would also require a number of changes to the SAB’s operation. The Board would be required to release to the public all scientific information used in determining its advisories to EPA, indicating any and all "uncertainties" associated with the scientific advice it does provide, and it must ensure that the advice it provides to EPA reflect the views of all Board members.  It also would allow the public to file public comments on those advisories and require the Board to respond to all public comments – forcing the SAB to waste time and limited funds on burdensome administrative requirements instead of actually advising the EPA on science. These additional requirements that the bill demands of the SAB are essentially designed to keep it from getting anything accomplished, especially since the bill contains no additional resources for the board to function.
The bill passed 236 to 181

It was a mostly party line vote. One Republican--Chris Gibson (NY-19)--broke party lines to vote against it. Two Democrats--Brad Ashford (NE-02) and Collin Peterson (MN-07)--broke party lines to vote for it.

The Housed voted on one amendment to the bill, from Republican David McKinley (WV-01). It would block individuals from sitting on the Science Advisory Board if they are currently receiving EPA contracts or grants, and it would prohibit SAB members from applying for EPA contracts or grants in the three years following the end of their service.

This passed 242 to 175.

Four Republicans voted against it:

Bob Dold (IL-10)
Chris Gibson (NY-19)
Kay Granger (TX-12)
Michael Rogers (AL-03)

10 Democrats voted for it:

Brad Ashford (NE-02)
Gwen Graham (FL-02)
Alan Grayson (FL-09)
Gene Green (TX-29)
Hank Johnson (GA-04)
Stephen Lynch (MA-08)
Gwen Moore (WI-04)
Collin Peterson (MN-07)
Kathleen Rice (NY-04)
Kurt Schrader (OR-05)

No comments:

Post a Comment