TAXPAYER WATCHDOG GROUP WARNS AGAINST ENVIRONMENTAL EXTREMISM ON EARTH DAY | Citizens Against Government Waste

TAXPAYER WATCHDOG GROUP WARNS AGAINST ENVIRONMENTAL EXTREMISM ON EARTH DAY

Press Release

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASEContact: Jim Campi or Aaron Taylor
April 22, 1999(202) 467-5300

WASHINGTON, DC – Citizens Against Government Waste (CAGW), America’s largest taxpayer advocacy group, today marked “Earth Day” by decrying wasteful government spending on misguided environmental initiatives.

“Earth Day is about the importance of protecting and wisely managing our natural resources,” said CAGW President Thomas A. Schatz.  “Unfortunately, the Clinton administration has made extreme environmentalism its official policy.  This not only puts an unacceptable burden on taxpayers; it also gives Americans an almost literal impression that the sky is falling.”

“America needs a sensible environmental policy that utilizes the positive effects of the free market,” continued Schatz.  “Individuals and businesses can make better environmental decisions than government bureaucrats.  No one is interested in spoiling the environment that provides the resources for America’s economic growth.”

In a groundbreaking investigative report last fall, CAGW uncovered highly questionable grants provided to various organizations by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA).  The report, entitled Phony Philanthropy: How Government Grants are Subverting the Missions of Nonprofits, revealed how serious conflicts of interest can arise when the groups are funded in whole or in part by the government.  The report found that many of these organizations lobby Congress, and usually do so in a self-serving manner.  CAGW also found that some of these supposedly grassroots organizations receive up to 99 percent of their funding from the federal government, and several have negative fund balances.

CAGW is continuing research in the environmental arena with its ongoing investigation of the EPA’s Office of Environmental Justice (OEJ).  The goal of OEJ is to ensure that federally funded programs and practices do not subject minority and low-income communities to “disproportionately high and adverse human health or environmental effects.”  However, OEJ’s policies have become a roadblock to creating desperately needed jobs in impoverished, minority-dominated neighborhoods.

 “It’s time to bring some common sense to this issue.  We need to protect the environment, not extreme policies and bureaucracies” Schatz concluded.

Citizens Against Government Waste is a member of the Resourceful Earth Coalition.  CAGW is a 600,000-member nonpartisan, nonprofit organization dedicated to eliminating waste, fraud, and abuse in government.

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