July 22, 2010
Today, during Full Committee markup of H.R. 4416, a bill to increase the authorization of the Great Ape Conservation Act of 2000 from $5 million to $7.5 million a year, Republicans offered a fiscally responsible amendment to freeze the authorization at the current level of $5 million. The amendment to keep funds level for Great Ape conservation failed by a 14-21 vote. Click here to see the final roll call
“This bill simply ignores record deficits and the $13.2 trillion national debt by authorizing higher spending of money that we do not have. During these difficult financial times, American families across the country have had to be better stewards of their family budget, but the Democrat Majority of this Congress continues to increase spending on programs that will not grow our economy, such as Great Ape conservation. Americans want Congress to stop monkeying around with taxpayer money and get serious about fixing our unsustainable debt,” said Ranking Member Doc Hastings (WA-04).
“This increase in authorization is symptomatic of the insatiable appetite that this Democrat controlled Congress has to spend our taxpayers hard earned dollars. This year the Obama Administration has requested $2 million for the Great Ape Conservation Fund--$3 million below the current authorization level. This bill continues to pile up a mountain of debt on our children and grandchildren that will strangle economic prosperity in this country,” said Rep. Jason Chaffetz (UT-03), who sponsored the amendment.
The Great Ape Conservation Act established a fund to finance projects to conserve endangered Great Apes. Since becoming law, the highest amount ever requested for the program is $2 million and the most the program has never been appropriated is $2.5 million, in Fiscal Year 2010. An appropriation of $7.5 million to the Great Ape Conservation Fund, which this bill allows, would almost triple the amount ever spent in one year on this program.
Print version of this document