2011 Scorecard Vote
House Rules Committee Ranking Member Louise Slaughter (D-NY) introduced this amendment to H.R. 2838, the Coast Guard and Maritime Transportation Act of 2011, to strike a section of the bill that would eliminate the tools used by federal and state officials to limit the introduction of aquatic invasive species from ballast water, which is carried by vessels to add weight and provide stability. Aquatic invasive species are found in states across the country, but they can be particularly problematic in the freshwater Great Lakes, where ballast water discharges are responsible for the introduction of more than 30 percent of the more than 185 invasive species that are currently disrupting the food chain, fouling beaches, and harming infrastructure in the region. On November 4, the House rejected the Slaughter amendment by a vote of 161-237 (House roll call vote 836). YES IS THE PRO-ENVIRONMENT VOTE. The House passed H.R. 2838 with the harmful ballast water provisions, while the Senate Commerce Committee on November 2 reported its own Coast Guard authorization bill (S. 1665), which does not include the harmful ballast water provisions. The full Senate has not yet taken action on S. 1655.