In Dunkirk, Portman Highlights Benefits of the Great Lakes Restoration Initiative

May 31, 2017 | Press Releases

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Yesterday evening, U.S. Senator Rob Portman (R-OH) visited a farm in Dunkirk with the Ohio Farm Bureau to see firsthand how the Great Lakes Restoration Initiative (GLRI) is being used to implement farming practices to help protect the health of Lake Erie. Portman has led efforts in the Senate to help secure funding for the GLRI despite consistent efforts from both the Obama and Trump administrations to cut the bipartisan initiative.

“The Blanchard River Demonstration Farms Network is a great example of how GLRI funds are being used to improve water quality in the region while supporting sustainable farming practices, and I want to thank the Ohio Farm Bureau and Chris Kurt for the tour of his farm,” said Portman.  “The project I saw firsthand uses cutting-edge conservation practices to improve water quality, and it is incredibly important to the Blanchard River Watershed and the Great Lakes.  The GLRI is critical to Ohio’s fishing industry, our tourism industry, and the drinking water of three million Ohioans.  The program has brought more than $164 million in funding to Ohio communities to clean up pollution in the Lake, stop invasive species like Asian carp, and reduce the likelihood of harmful algal blooms, and I will continue to help lead efforts in the U.S. Senate to protect funding for this bipartisan initiative.” 

NOTE: Senator Portman has a record of delivering results for the millions of Ohioans who depend on Lake Erie.  He has led efforts to fully fund the Great Lakes Restoration Initiative, and helped restore funding to its authorized level of $300 million in FY 2016 when the Obama administration attempted to cut funding for the initiative by $50 million. Portman, who recently saw firsthand a GLRI success story in Toledo, expressed strong opposition to the new administration’s request to eliminate funding for the program.  Portman and his bipartisan colleagues succeeded in securing the full $300 million in GLRI funding in the recent bipartisan spending agreement. 

Following are photos of yesterday’s event: