How Do Republicans Show Their Love? Cutting Job Creation Opportunities and Not Cleaning Up Our Tap Water

As I’m writing this blog, there is news of a water main break in Asheville, NC that threatens the main feed for the nice folks up in the Appalachians.  People in Richmond, VA were notified to boil their water after a water main break this weekend.  A high school in Detroit, MI was closed today because of a water main leak over the weekend. 

These problems are plaguing big cities and small towns alike and they need two things: money to fix the pipes and people to do the job.   

And yet, when the House majority breathlessly released their budget cuts, they happily chopped $ 547 Million from the Drinking Water State Revolving Fund.  In 2007, EPA estimated that we have over $ 330 Billion dollars in need over the next 20 years to maintain the pipes and water mains running under our streets.  That translates into more than $ 16 Billion that we need to keep the water coming out of our tap safe to drink.  That also translates into enough shovel-ready projects that would create work for more than 400,000 Americans, including almost 90,000 direct construction jobs.

And yet, the Republicans cut funding to these projects.  I thought they cared about jobs.  I guess I thought wrong.

The Obama Administration is not completely innocent either: the president’s proposal cuts $ 410 Million from the drinking water budget. 

I don’t get it.  Times are tough and people are struggling to make ends meet.  A trip to the hospital to treat Cryptosporidium poisoning is the last thing anyone wants.  So why aren’t we doing what we can to make sure that doesn’t happen to anyone?

We all drink water and bathe in water and cook with water.  Don’t we want it to be clean?  We should not be further crippling our cities’ ability to provide us with clean tap water.  And we should put tens of thousands of people to work to clean up our water.  Our health depends on it.