Norton to Testify on Her Bill Making D.C. Eligible for Urban Forestry Funds, Tomorrow
WASHINGTON, D.C.—Congresswoman Eleanor Holmes Norton (D-DC) will testify before the House Agriculture Committee tomorrow, December 11th, at 10:00 a.m. on her bill to make the District of Columbia eligible for urban forestry funding. Norton’s bill, the McIntire-Stennis Act District of Columbia Equality Act, would amend the McIntire-Stennis Act that provides U.S. states and territories with formula funds to support state-designated institutions’ cooperative forestry research programs to also extend available funding to D.C. Norton said that the District is treated as a state under virtually all federal programs and that the District’s omission from the legislation was likely an oversight from before the District had home rule or a Member of Congress.
The District’s notable absence from this definition makes it ineligible for funds that would support research at the District’s state-supported university, the University of the District of Columbia (UDC). UDC’s College of Agriculture, Urban Stability, and Environmental Science complements the District’s ongoing forestry efforts. UDC is the nation’s only urban land-grant university.
“Six years ago, my provision for UDC to receive forestry research funding was included in the Senate version of the Farm Bill,” Norton said. “That should be no surprise, as D.C. residents pay the highest taxes per capita in the nation and, for the most part, D.C. is eligible for the programs states qualify for, including these critical federal forestry funds. UDC, our urban land-grant university, needs funds for their programs in the District. I have already gotten D.C. treated as a state for virtually all federal funding. This legislation is no different.”