WASHINGTON, D.C. – Today, U.S. Senator Sherrod Brown (D-OH) announced that the Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) Great Lakes Restoration Initiative (GLRI) has awarded a grant of just over $1,000,000 to the city of Akron for the design of the Gorge Dam Removal Project. Removal of the Gorge Dam will allow the Cuyahoga River to flow freely and result in improved water quality year-round. Brown applauds the efforts of the local officials from the City of Akron and Summit County for securing the EPA grant, which will cover the entirety of the design cost.
“It’s very encouraging to see this project being put into motion after years of hard work from Akron’s local officials. The removal of the Gorge Dam is a key step to bringing back the Cuyahoga River and I applaud the work being done in Akron to make that a reality,” said Brown.
Brown secured $320 million for the Great Lakes Restoration Initiative (GLRI) in the 2020 appropriations package. GLRI is a results-driven program, and this funding ensures that it has the resources it needs to address the most serious issues that threaten the ecological and economic wellbeing of the Great Lakes basin, including invasive species, pollution, and toxic contamination.
Brown also spoke out against the President’s 2021 budget, which would have cut USDA conservation programs that help improve water quality in Lake Erie. Brown worked to ensure GLRI was not only reinstated but also fully funded after President Trump proposed eliminating the program in 2018.
GLRI is a highly successful program that has jumpstarted restoration efforts to protect, maintain, and restore the chemical, biological, and physical integrity of the Great Lakes. Every dollar spent by GLRI on Great Lakes cleanup produces an additional $3 of economic activity in the region. Brown fought for and secured full funding for the GLRI program last year, putting the funding at $300 million. In Fiscal Year 2018, the President proposed eliminating GLRI and Senators Brown and Portman worked together to ensure it was not only reinstated but also fully funded in the two most recent appropriation bills.