Vermont Conservation Voters Calls on Gov. Scott to Sign Budget
Montpelier, VT – Today, Vermont Conservation Voters called on Governor Scott to sign the budget that passed both the Vermont House and Senate with overwhelming support earlier this year. VCV is concerned about a veto’s potential negative impacts on environmental and climate action efforts, as well as the troubling precedent of vetoing a budget over a non-budgetary policy issue.
“The Vermont budget funds numerous programs that support safe drinking water, clean air, healthy communities, a thriving outdoor tourism economy, and so much more. We can’t afford to play political games with funding for these vital programs, and that’s why we’re calling on Governor Scott to sign the budget,” said Lauren Hierl, political director for Vermont Conservation Voters.
Examples of VCV priority funding initiatives included in the FY2018 budget:
- Funding for clean water
- Investments in our downtowns and villages
- Funding to plan our clean energy future
- Funding for working lands
- Funding to support wildlife and outdoor recreation
- Funding to ensure the state can respond to an environmental crisis such as the contamination of drinking water supplies like we have seen with the release of PFOA in North Bennington
Although VCV advocated for more funding for clean water and other environmental priorities, given where we are in the legislative process, enacting the budget now ensures a baseline of support for programs fundamental to a healthy environment and healthy economy, and avoids a government shutdown that would affect many vital programs.
In addition, Hierl noted: “As an environmental group, the Governor’s call to veto the budget over a policy outside the scope of the budget is extremely troubling. Setting this precedent concerns us – for example, next year will the Governor demand changes to Act 250 or another policy that protects Vermont’s environment as a condition for signing the budget? This type of DC-style political maneuver – holding the budget hostage to try to force through an unvetted policy proposal at the last minute – has no place in Vermont.”
VCV calls on Governor Scott to sign the budget to fund the many state programs essential for healthy Vermont communities and to support good government.
Founded in 1982, Vermont Conservation Voters works to elect environmentally-friendly candidates to public office, and then holds elected officials accountable for the decisions they make affecting our air, water, communities, land, and wildlife.