EPA hires million-dollar lobbyist
By Henry Lamb
web posted May 6, 2002
What else would you call it? The EPA gives a DC firm a million
dollars, and then, the head of that firm appears at three
Appropriations Committee hearings to say that the EPA needs
more money. Sounds like lobbying to me.
The firm is a not-for-profit organization called
STAPPA/ALAPCO, which are two organizations sharing the
same offices and staff at 444 North Capitol Street: State and
Territorial Pollution Program Administrators, and Association of
Local Air Pollution Control Officials.
Since its first EPA grant in 1977, of $4,408 to hold an Emission
Control Conference in Falls Church, Virginia, this outfit has
received 49 grants from the EPA, that total $13,190,826; of
which, $10,006,968 has been awarded since 1990.
Why is the EPA giving your tax dollars to this NGO?
Aside from regular appearances before Congressional
committees, these folks are an extremely effective Public
Relations firm. They claim members in 54 states and territories,
and 165 major metropolitan areas. Most of the members are
paid, at least in part, by grants from the EPA.
These people are government officials who have formed a non-
profit association, funded by the EPA, to promote, and
implement the policies of the EPA, and lobby for more tax
dollars to do it.
The association adopted a resolution on global climate change in
1997, and another resolution on greenhouse gas emissions in
1998. Both are listed on their web
site, but the actual resolutions are mysteriously absent.
This association sent a delegation to the U.N. climate change
meetings in Bonn, Kyoto, Buenos Aires, The Hague, and
Marrakesh - paid for with your tax dollars.
This association works closely with the International Council for Local Environmental
Initiatives, and other international NGOs that craft the U.N.
policies which are adopted as treaties, and then are implemented
by federal government agencies such as the EPA, through
national NGOs consisting of local officials who are paid by the
EPA - with your money.
During the 1999-2001 budget years, STAPPA/ALAPCO
received three grants totaling $1,972,354. Before the cycle
ended, they received another two grants for the 2000-2002
period, totaling $515,741. And before this cycle ended, they
received another grant for the 2001-2003 period for $1,071,
326. Is this double dipping, or what?
This NGO is actually a PGO, as some call it - a Private
Government Organization. It appears to operate on funds
provided by the EPA, for the purposes of getting EPA more
funding from Congress, and to promote EPA policies. Is this
appropriate use of tax dollars?
This NGO, however is just the tip of the iceberg. All agencies
have their favorite PGOs and NGOs that are eager to do the
agency's bidding in exchange for fat grants. "Riverkeepers"
police local "Heritage Rivers" - at your expense. "Stakeholder"
meetings are organized and facilitated by PGOs and NGOs - at
your expense. NGOs actually sue the government to advance
their agenda, and then bill the government for legal fees - at your
The Department of Housing and Urban Development gave the
American Planning Association at least $2 million to develop its
"Growing Smart Legislative Guidebook," which Congress seems
hell-bent on getting implemented at the state and local level by
providing $125 million in bribe money for local communities that
agree to implement the guidebook's recommendations.
The 1976 U.N.
document which sets forth the principles of land use control,
and which the guidebook's recommendations would implement,
was signed for the U.S., by William K. Reilly, former head of the
EPA, and by Carla Hills, former U.S. Trade Negotiator.
The policy - development, promotion, implementation -
technique, using PGOs and NGOs is a masterful strategy
devised at the international level and perfected in the U.S. during
the 1990s, especially through Bill Clinton's President's Council
on Sustainable Development.
Nowhere in my research could I find government grants to
organizations that promote the principles of freedom, private
property rights, or free-markets. But then I shouldn't. These
organizations generally believe that it is inappropriate for the
government to use tax dollars for these purposes.
It is equally inappropriate for government agencies to use tax
dollars to lobby, or promote agency policy. Congress should
bring this practice to a speedy end.
Congress, though, has condoned, and funded this process.
Perhaps it's time to bring to a speedy end to the career of the
Congressmen who support this inappropriate practice.
Henry Lamb is the
executive vice president of the Environmental Conservation
Organization (ECO), and chairman of Sovereignty International .
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