A $13.2 billion FY2016 budget proposal slotted for the Department of the Interior will continue the Obama administration’s strong support for Interior’s core missions.
A $13.2 billion FY2016 budget proposal slotted for the Department of the Interior (DOI) will continue the Obama administration’s strong support for Interior’s core missions, including protection of the nation’s cultural and natural heritage, management of energy development on public lands and waters, and investment in science, among other activities, the DOI said.
“This is a forward-looking budget that invests in Interior’s key missions so that we can continue to serve the American people,” said Secretary of the Interior Sally Jewell in a statement. “The President’s budget provides targeted investments to grow our domestic energy portfolio, build climate resilience, and revitalize our national parks as they approach their 100th anniversary. The budget also helps fulfill our nation’s commitments to American Indians and Alaska Natives, including a much-needed and historic investment to help improve education for Indian children.”
DOI said the 2016 budget proposal is an increase of $959.2 million, about 8 percent, over the 2015 enacted level, including $11.9 billion for Interior programs funded by the Interior, Environment, and Related Agencies appropriation, and $1.1 billion for Interior’s Bureau of Reclamation and Central Utah Project Completion Act, funded in the Energy and Water Development Appropriations Act. The department said the budget would generate $5.6 billion in savings over 10 years through legislative reform proposals, including oil and gas management reforms to encourage diligent development of
Budget highlights Include, according to the DOI, include:
Land and Water Conservation Fund. The innovative, highly successful program reinvests royalties from offshore oil and gas activities into public lands, enabling access for sportsmen and hunters, protecting historic battlefields and providing grants to states for recreation and conservation projects.
NPS Centennial Funding. The budget includes funding in 2016 to allow the National Park Service to make targeted, measurable upgrades over the next ten years to all of its highest priority, non-transportation assets, restoring and maintaining them in good condition. The budget also proposes $150 million in discretionary and mandatory funding for a Centennial Challenge matching program to leverage private donations to parks, and $100 million in mandatory funding for a Public Lands Centennial Fund that competitively awards funds to Federal land management agencies for signature projects and programs.
Commemorating America’s Civil Rights History. The 2016 budget proposes $50 million to restore and highlight key sites across the country that tell the story of the struggle for civil rights. State, local and tribal governments may also apply for grants to document and preserve stories and other sites related to the Civil Rights Movement.
Supporting Native Youth and Education. The Generation Indigenous initiative includes a $1 billion investment in Indian education to support a comprehensive transformation of the Bureau of Indian Education, a multi-year process that will transform the BIE into an organization that serves as a capacity builder and service provider to support Tribes in educating their youth and deliver a world-class and culturally appropriate education across Indian Country.
Strengthening Tribal Nations. The budget provides increases across federal programs that serve Tribes, including a proposed 12 percent increase for the Bureau of Indian Affairs over the 2015 enacted level. The budget includes a $26 million increase to fully fund Contract Support Costs that tribes incur from managing federal programs, and a legislative proposal to make full Contract Support Costs mandatory in 2017 in support of self-determination.
Building a Clean Energy Infrastructure. To enhance national energy security and create jobs in new industries, the budget invests in renewable energy development programs, providing about $100 million to review and permit renewable energy projects on public lands and offshore waters.
Improving Quality of Life in the Insular Areas. The FY2016 request boosts programs in the insular areas aimed at improving K-12 public school facilities and confronting energy security challenges. The budget includes an increase of $3.9 million to improve health and safety conditions in insular school facilities, and an additional $1.5 million to implement sustainable energy projects identified by the territories.
To see the complete DOI budget request, visit www.doi.gov/budget and/or http://www.doi.gov/budget/appropriations/2016/highlights/index.cfm.