Washington, D.C. – House Natural Resources Committee Chair Raúl M. Grijalva (D-Ariz.) today sent a letter to Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) and Majority Leader Steny Hoyer (D-Md.) emphasizing previously stated concerns about including permitting related provisions in must-pass legislation, namely the National Defense Authorization Act or government funding legislation. Enclosed with the letter is a copy of the Sept. 12 letter led by Chair Grijalva and signed by 76 other members of Congress that opposed attaching a permitting rider to must-pass legislation this year.
The full letter is available here.
On sending the letter, Chair Grijalva said: “Given its unpopularity the first time around, I’m all but certain that another Dirty Deal would be dead on arrival, but I’m not taking any chances. Democrats are closing out this Congress with historic wins across the board, including climate action and environmental justice. Let’s not pollute that legacy with harmful legislative riders that nobody wants.”
On Nov. 15, 70 environmental justice groups and 60 other allied organizations sent a letter to President Joe Biden voicing their opposition to the permitting rider and support for Chair Grijalva’s and Rep. A Donald McEachin’s (D-Va.) Environmental Justice For All Act, the most comprehensive environmental justice legislation in history.
The dirty permitting rider was originally proposed to be included in the must-pass Continuing Resolution in September but was rejected after widespread public backlash. The permitting rider would have restricted public access to the courts to seek remedies against illegal project development; placed arbitrary limits on the amount of time the public has to comment on polluting projects; curtailed public input, environmental review, and government accountability; fast-tracked a certain number of harmful fossil fuel projects, including the dangerous Mountain Valley Pipeline; undermined the Clean Water Act; and more.
On Sept. 12, Chair Grijalva sent a letter with 76 other members to Speaker Pelosi and Majority Leader Hoyer urging them to keep the permitting rider out of must-pass legislation this year. Chair Grijalva also published an opinion piece in August explaining his opposition to the permitting rider.
Hundreds of groups and individuals also sent letters opposing the permitting rider, including the following:
- Aug. 24 letter from more than 650 grassroots organizations and environmental, civil rights, and climate-focused advocacy groups to Senate Majority Leader Schumer and Speaker Pelosi.
- Sept. 9 letter from more than 30 environmental justice leaders to Speaker Pelosi.
- Sept. 19 letter from 87 environmental justice and allied groups to the Senate Environmental Justice Caucus.
- Sept. 22 letter from more than 400 scientists, doctors, and nurses to Majority Leader Schumer and Speaker Pelosi.
Media Contact: Lindsay Gressard
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