Fourth EPA Official Departs Pruitt’s Administration

(Photo Credit: Paul A. Fagan, Flickr Creative Commons)

by | May 4, 2018

(Photo Credit: Paul A. Fagan, Flickr Creative Commons)

Two more officials of the EPA have announced their departures, bringing the total this week to four. Liz Bowman, the agency’s top public affairs official, was the third to leave the agency this week, followed by John Konkus, the agency’s deputy associate administrator for public affairs. The two followed the resignations of Pasquale Perrotta, head of EPA chief Scott Pruitt’s security detail, and Albert Kelly, who headed up the agency’s superfund cleanup program, Bloomberg reports. Perrotta and Kelly were under scrutiny in regards to a number of formal investigations into Pruitt’s questionable travel, spending and management practices.

While Bowman said that she is “extremely thankful for the opportunity to serve the Trump Administration and Administrator Pruitt,” an EPA source told CNN that Bowman had grown tired of fighting against anti-Pruitt stories and was beginning to distance herself from him in recent weeks.

Representative Don Beyer, a Democrat from Virginia, told Bloomberg that Konkus’ departure shows that “Scott Pruitt’s toxicity has infected the upper echelons of EPA leadership, and the process of cleaning this mess must begin with Pruitt’s dismissal.”

Pruitt spoke to members of the House Energy and Commerce environment subcommittee, and also testified before a House Appropriations subcommittee, last Thursday. During his appearances, the EPA chief “gave little ground,” suggesting that the storm that has raged around his administration stems “largely from opponents who want to stall President Trump’s environmental policies,” the Washington Post wrote (via Energy Manager Today) last week.

During his testimony, several Democrats questioning him urged him to resign. “You are unfit to hold public office, and you are undeserving of the public trust,” Rep. Frank Pallone Jr. (D-NJ), the Energy and Commerce’s top Democrat said, according to the Washington Post.

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