Budget Update from Florida Sea Grant
On May 23, 2017, the final version of the President’s budget was released, and as expected, the funding for Sea Grant is eliminated, along with funding for the National Estuarine Research Reserves, the Coastal Zone Management Program and many other programs that provide critical services to the US coastal economy and environment.
We appreciate that many of you have helped before and ask that where possible, you again contact your local member of Congress with a call or letter voicing support for full funding of the National Sea Grant College program in FY 2018. At the bottom of this post, we have provided a template letter that can be sent to representatives.
Sea Grant has very strong bipartisan support in Congress; however with so many programs having a zero budget, we cannot take anything for granted and need to continue to talk to the decision-makers about the critical natural of this program to students, universities, communities, coastal businesses and our environment.
Here is the language from the FY18 President’s budget.
National Sea Grant College Program:
Terminate the National Sea Grant College Program (Base Funding $72,940,000 and 14 FTE;
Program Change: -72,940,000 and -14 FTE):
NOAA requests a decrease of $72,940,000 and 0 FTE for a total of $0 and 0 FTE to terminate the National Sea Grant College Program Base and the Marine Aquaculture Program.
NOAA’s budget proposes to terminate the National Sea Grant College Program and dismantle the network of 33 Sea Grant programs located in coastal States and territories. With the termination of the NOAA Sea Grant Program, NOAA will explore a range of options to address staffing; including transfers, Voluntary Early Retirement Authority (VERA) and Voluntary Separation Incentive Payments (VSIP) and other options will be requested and/or explored.
Additionally, more than 3,000 scientists, researchers, students, and outreach experts from more than over 300 institutions will lose support from NOAA’s Sea Grant funding.
NOAA will also terminate the Sea Grant’s Marine Aquaculture Program.
As a result of this termination, support will be withdrawn for the larger cross-NOAA Aquaculture Program, impacting aquaculture partners in the National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS) and the National Ocean Service (NOS), as well as state partnerships with fisheries managers, seafood processors, fishing associations, maritime-related business, and consumer groups.
National Sea Grant College Program Changes: National Sea Grant College Program and Marine Aquaculture Program
PPA: National Sea Grant College Program
PPA: Marine Aquaculture Program
Base: $63,951,000 and 13 FTE
Base: $8,989,000 and 1 FTE
Program Change: -$63,951,000 and -13 FTE
Program Change: -$8,989,000 and -1 FTE
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