The U.S. House of Representatives took another major step forward today in the fight to dedicate 80% of BP fines to the Gulf Coast region as it passed a transportation bill that included the Scalise RESTORE Act amendment.
"As we approach the two-year anniversary of the Deepwater Horizon disaster, this House victory is another major step towards ensuring that 80% of the Clean Water Act fines are dedicated to help the Gulf Coast fully recover," Scalise said. "Today's vote further emphasizes the House's commitment to dedicating these fines to the Gulf States, and the fact that RESTORE was included in the original bill by House Republican leadership further underscores the commitment to passing this important legislation for our recovery. It's only fair that the lion's share of BP Clean Water Act fines are dedicated to the Gulf Coast states still dealing with the impacts of the disaster for the purposes of ecosystem and economic recovery. I'm proud to continue working with my colleagues in the House and Senate to pass the RESTORE Act in both chambers and am pleased that we're one step closer to having the full RESTORE Act signed into law."
"Representative Scalise has been a tremendous champion for our coast and that work has paid off with today's forward movement on the RESTORE Act," said Steven Peyronnin, Executive Director of the Coalition to Restore Coastal Louisiana. "This is a critical piece of legislation for Louisiana as well as the Gulf Coast, as we continue to struggle with the impacts of the 2010 Deepwater Horizon disaster. The RESTORE Act would provide needed funds to restore our coast and help ensure a sustainable future for Louisiana and its neighbors on the Gulf Coast. We are encouraged to see that the House of Representatives is taking action on this very important issue and thank Mr. Scalise for his strong leadership."
"Today's House vote is another major step forward in our quest to restore fully the Gulf Coast in the aftermath of the Deepwater Horizon," said Anne Milling, founder of Women of the Storm. "I applaud Congressman Scalise for his strong leadership on this issue and his continued commitment to the restoration of our fragile coast. The RESTORE Act would not only jump start much needed and long overdue projects in all five Gulf Coast states but also create jobs in our region. I urge Congress to continue working with Congressman Scalise to get the RESTORE Act quickly signed into law."
"Today's vote is a critical step forward in passing the RESTORE Act, and Greater New Orleans, Inc. commends Congressman Scalise for his leadership on this issue," said Michael Hecht, President and CEO of Greater New Orleans, Inc., the regional economic development organization for Southeast Louisiana. "Our region's future - economic and beyond - depends on the restoration of the Gulf Coast. The Gulf Coast is necessary for not only the people of Louisiana but our entire nation, as our industries provide America with economic and energy security. For its dedication to the long-term health of coastal ecosystems and their economies, the RESTORE Act has our full support."
"We thank Representative Steve Scalise and other Members of the Gulf delegation, as well as the leadership of both the House and Senate, for making Gulf restoration such a high priority. The time has come to make good on promises to restore the environments of the Gulf region and the communities and economies that rely on them," said a joint statement issued by Environmental Defense Fund, National Audubon Society, The Nature Conservancy, Ocean Conservancy and Oxfam America. "Now we look forward to getting the RESTORE Act across the finish line, and the President signing RESTORE into law."
The provision included in the bill would establish the Gulf Coast Restoration Trust Fund and dedicate 80% of the BP Clean Water Act fines to that trust fund for the restoration of the Gulf region from the spill