DLNR scales back on programs due to federal budget cuts

The head of the Department of Land and Natural Resources answered questions from state lawmakers on the effect of the federal sequester in Hawaii Tuesday morning.

DLNR Chairman William Aila reported that federal budget cutbacks have forced his department to make small cuts in conservation and education programs, but it could get worse.

“We’re missing about $100,000 from each program. Some granting opportunities that would be available to the department to do invasive species work have been pulled back, so that’s a direct impact, Aila said. “We don’t know because as the Congress makes a decision on whether to pass a budget or whether to go with the continuing resolution, we don’t know what the impacts will be.”

Aila says if cuts get worse, he may have to ask the state legislature for budget help next year.

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