Colorado U.S. Senator Michael Bennet issued the following statement on the release of the President’s FY 2015 budget request.
“The President’s budget offers a number of promising ideas to help grow our economy and get Coloradans back to work. One of the most important aspects of the budget for Colorado is a smarter, more sensible approach to dealing with wildfires that will save us money in the future. It is also encouraging to see a focus on repairing and rebuilding our crumbling infrastructure through the creation of an infrastructure bank that will help us remain competitive in the 21st century economy.
“The President also renewed his commitment to conservation by requesting full funding for the Land and Water Conservation Fund (LWCF), which has been used to help preserve dozens of high-priority landscapes across Colorado. LWCF resources help safeguard our state’s natural heritage and drive our outdoor recreation-based economy.
“But we still have more work to do to craft a long-term deficit reduction plan that is bipartisan and shows we’re all in this together. That’s what Coloradans expect and deserve. I look forward to reviewing the budget in greater detail, and I remain willing to work with my colleagues on both sides of the aisle to put us on a more fiscally sustainable path.”
- The wildfire portion of the President’s budget request is modeled after a bipartisan Senate bill, S. 1875, the Wildfire Disaster Funding Act of 2013, that Bennet cosponsored, that would allow the U.S. Forest Service and Department of Interior to fight some wildfires using emergency funds separate from their discretionary budgets.
- Bennet has long championed the Land and Water Conservation Fund as an important vehicle for preserving Colorado’s open spaces, which, beyond their aesthetic beauty, are a significant driver of Colorado’s economy. He is currently leading efforts to preserve the Hermosa Creek Watershed in southwest Colorado and the Thompson Divide area on the western slope.
- The President’s request includes a proposal to create an infrastructure bank, an idea Bennet has supported through the introduction of S. 1957, the Partnership to Build America Act, in January of this year.