Executive Vice President of Public Affairs John Calvelli issued the following statement on the Administration’s release of its Fiscal Year 2019 budget request: “The budget blueprint released by the Administration for Fiscal Year 2019 spending is shortsighted and harmful to American interests. By recommending the slashing or outright elimination of several essential conservation and wildlife trafficking accounts and programs, it would make the world a poorer and more dangerous place – for both wildlife and people.

“The FY2019 budget request is similar to last year’s request, in which support for several U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service programs was cut, including the Multinational Species Conservation Funds, Office of Law Enforcement, and Office of International Affairs. Under the State Department’s proposed budget, the Development Assistance account within the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID) and the U.S. contribution to the Global Environment Facility would be drastically cut. The U.S. Forest Service’s International Forestry Program, which helps U.S. trade fairness by stopping illegal logging, and the Marine Mammal Commission have been proposed for complete elimination. All of these programs and agencies promote good governance, law enforcement, and U.S. national and economic security while advancing conservation.

“We call on Congress to restore common sense to the federal appropriations for FY2019 and ensure that critically needed programs and agencies that address wildlife trafficking, illegal logging, international conservation and other priorities are sufficiently funded.”