A Message from Our CEO: How You Can Take Action in Response to the President's FY18 Budget

Please use our template messages below to tell Congress and your Community about how these cuts would negatively affect Corps.

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Dear Friends,­

You probably heard in the news that President Trump released his first budget proposal. As we previewed in March, we have significant reason for concern and we need your help over the coming months to ensure this budget does not go into effect.

Why are we concerned? This budget shows where the administration’s priorities are, and it’s not good news for our federal partners.  The President’s Budget proposes the complete elimination of the Corporation for National and Community Service, which includes AmeriCorps and VISTA. It also proposes massive cuts to public lands funding at USDA and the Forest Service of 21 percent, and a 11 percent cut to the Department of Interior, with National Park Service taking a bigger cut at 13 percent. Department of Labor would also be cut by 20% including the Job Corps, YouthBuild and WIOA programs. 

If these cuts go into effect, they would have a devastating impact on our Corps and opportunities for our Corpsmembers and partners around the country. I want to let you know that we are paying close attention to these issues in DC. We are working hard to advocate for the funding Corps need to continue engaging youth and veterans in serving our communities and nation.

While President Trump’s proposals are hugely concerning, Congress makes the final decision on spending. Just this month, we saw Congress provide respectable funding levels for FY17, indicating they may not have the appetite for the President’s proposed level of cuts in FY18. Congress is already expressing concern over President Trump’s budget, and there is near certainty of major changes. However, it’s important to remember there are other ways, beyond funding, in which the President can influence which activities federal agencies prioritize.

This is why we must keep the pressure on our Members of Congress and use our most effective local tools - your voice - to let Congress know that #CorpsWorkPlease use our press release template to reach local media, and template budget and appropriations support letters to reach your House and Senate members today to tell them about the impact these cuts would have on your community.

You are already having an impact! For FY17, AmeriCorps continued at a $40 million increased level over FY15, and the Chairman of the Senate Appropriations Committee, along with Chair of the Labor, Health and Human Services Appropriations Subcommittee (which funds AmeriCorps), both joined a resolution honoring AmeriCorps. Additionally, all the key accounts that fund Corps’ public lands projects received funding increases.

Your ongoing support for The Corps Network, through membership and your advocacy with elected officials, makes this possible. We need your continued engagement with our public lands and national service advocacy. If we reach out to you, please take a few minutes to help! Everyone’s voice is important and we need to make a stand now to send a message these cuts cannot continue for another four years.

The Corps Network’s mission statement is “Strengthening America through Service and Conservation.” Unfortunately, the President’s proposed budget would hurt both service and conservation efforts, consequently effecting our country as whole. We have been through tough budget cycles before, and have weathered cuts for a number of years already, but this is an unprecedented threat. Know that we are working hard for you in DC, but we need your help on the ground. Please use our template press release and letters.

Thank you, as always, for all that you do. Keep up the good work!

Mary Ellen Sprenkel
The Corps Network



Below find template letters you can send to your Members of Congress to request support for federal agencies and funding important to Corps. Not sure who your members of Congress are or how to contact them? See below for Congressional Directories: 
      - U.S. Senate Directory
      - U.S. House Directory