Q&A: Mike Simpson previews Interior-Environment bill

By Andres Picon | 06/27/2024 06:16 AM EDT

The veteran appropriator discusses spending legislation proposing to shrink EPA’s budget by one-fifth.

Rep. Mike Simpson (R-Idaho).

Rep. Mike Simpson (R-Idaho), who chairs the House Interior and Environment Appropriations Subcommittee, will release his fiscal 2025 bill Thursday. Francis Chung/POLITICO

In his more than two decades on the House Appropriations Committee, Rep. Mike Simpson says he has worked to balance fiscal responsibility with the needs of public lands and waters across the country.

Finding that balance is always a challenge, he says, and this year is no exception.

As chair of the House Interior-Environment Appropriations Subcommittee, the Idaho Republican is — for the second year in a row — proposing steep cuts to a number of Interior Department bureaus because of increased needs in other areas, such as wildland firefighter salaries.


Additionally, Simpson is proposing to slash EPA funding by 20 percent to compensate for what he sees as a glut of funding from the Inflation Reduction Act. He also wants to force the agency to rein in certain environmental rulemakings.