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Advocates: Federal role crucial for iconic waterway cleanups

President Donald Trump

TRAVERSE CITY, Mich. (AP) _ President Donald Trump’s administration says it’s time for state and local governments to pay for cleanups of iconic but polluted waterways such as the Great Lakes, Chesapeake Bay and Puget Sound.

But supporters of those programs say the cleanups are already a team effort. They are fighting a proposal in the Environmental Protection Agency’s 2018 budget plan to cut $427 million for regional waterway restorations.

Many members of Congress in both parties also oppose defunding the cleanup efforts, which are popular with constituents.

Supporters say federal grants often require state or local funding matches. And federal agencies can help forge agreements among states that compete with each other economically and may have significant political differences.