Department of Environmental Quality (DEQ) Budget Slashed by 30%

DEQ Spokesman admits the DEQ no longer has adequate funding to address “imminent and substantial dangers.” On paper, a reduction of 30% translates into a complete inability of the DEQ to perform its most basic duties of protecting public health and Michigan’s environment. It’s true that budgets for all state programs and departments were cut across the board, but when the disproportionate cuts that the department has suffered over the last decade are factored in (56% reduction in General Fund support from 2002 to 2009), this year’s cuts have very serious implications on the public health of Michigan’s citizens and the environmental health of our natural resources. There are very basic services and programs of the DEQ that will continue to be stalled and, in some cases, completely halted. 

“The impact is going to be fewer resources to do compliance inspections and less following up on complaints in a number of programs,” said DEQ spokesman Bob McCann. “And there is no money for cleanup at thousands of sites known to be imminent and substantial dangers.”