The House Appropriations Committee voted this week to give the Reagan administration $250 million more than it requested for energy and water projects in 1983, continuing funding for several costly and controversial programs.
The committee's action drew an angry attack yesterday from six environmental groups who called the vote "an unabashed celebration of the pork barrel system."
The groups aimed their attack mainly at three projects they have fought for years -- the Clinch River Breeder Reactor in Oak Ridge, Tenn., the Tennessee-Tombigbee Waterway connecting Tennessee coal regions to the Gulf of Mexico, and the Garrison Diversion Project in North Dakota. They called on the full House to remove them from the 1983 budget, or at least to bring them up for a vote before the Nov. 2 elections.
"The American taxpayer deserves to have their representatives vote on these projects in the full spotlight of a regular legislative session, not in the shadow of a lame-duck session," said Rafe Pomerance, president of Friends of the Earth.
The controversial projects--estimated to cost from $6.7 billion to $13.9 billion by the time they are finished -- will be funded through the continuing resolution to the 1982 appropriations bill while Congress debates the 1983 measure.
The $13.6 billion energy and water development bill includes a $236 million increase over the administration's request for the Corps of Engineers and a $13 million increase for the Interior Department's Bureau of Reclamation.