Trump cuts Interior budget

The budget of the federal department that Nevada and other intermountain states are normally most concerned about has been severely slashed.

The cuts were announced March 11. They were so deep that news even made the Wall Street Journal: “The Interior Department would take a 14 percent cut under President Trump’s proposed budget, including nearly a third to an agency that manages water and power in the West. Under the president’s plan for the next fiscal year, Interior’s budget would fall to $12.6 billion from $14.6 billion approved last year. The National Park Service’s budget would fall 15 percent, while funds for the Bureau of Reclamation, which oversees controversial irrigation projects in states like California, would drop 31 percent.”

The Center for Western Priorities issued a statement: “The proposed budget includes major cuts to land and wildlife conservation programs housed in the Bureau of Land Management, Fish and Wildlife Service, and National Park Service and budget increases for oil, natural gas, and coal permitting and leasing. Notably, the budget would cut discretionary spending on the Land and Water Conservation Fund by more than 100 percent—not only zeroing out the program but trying to claw back funds Congress has already appropriated.”