Continuing Success for 2015 Legislative Days Event

In another achievement for the 2015 Door/Kewaunee Legislative Days event, the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources (DNR) recently announced that they will begin adopting new rules for manure handling specific to the Karst region via the administrative rule process. Protecting the public’s drinking water in at-risk Karst geo-regions was one of the major objectives of 2015 Door/Kewaunee Legislative Days agenda.

According to Representative Joel Kitchens: “It would have been very difficult to accomplish this through the legislative process. This issue affects a small number of Wisconsin counties, so I have been lobbying for it to be done this way.”

The scoping statement for the administrative process has been written and the DNR board will approve that document at their meeting in August; the statement will then be forwarded to the Governor’s office for his signature. The administrative rule process should be completed by Fall of 2017.

Bill Schuster, Director of the Door County Soil and Water Conservation Department, said: “It is very encouraging that the DNR has stated a commitment to take some action to address a serious water quality concern that this area has been challenged with for a very long time. Rep. Kitchens and I agree that it is now our collective role to continue to remind the DNR of their commitment to ensure meaningful groundwater quality protection results.”

The 2015 Door/Kewaunee Legislative Days event helped to increase awareness of this issue in Madison. Rep. Kitchens has been meeting with the DNR, who created statewide workgroups. Several state and federal agencies have been meeting to find a solution to water quality issues.

Door/Kewaunee Legislative Days Steering Committee co -chair Bill Chaudoir said: “I think we did very well on our 2015 Legislative Days goals. Rep. Kitchen’s leadership and commitment has made all the difference to this success. In a few months we will need to start work on 2017’s legislative agenda. Hopefully, our recent success will help build interest and even better participation for next year’s event.”

The Door/Kewaunee Legislative Days Steering Committee was very pleased with the immediate impact last year’s event had on several key issues, especially the Kewaunee Seawall project, the restoration of the Harbor Assistance Program funding and the reinstatement of the Knowles-Nelson Stewardship program. For more information about Legislative Days 2015 results, visit http://www.dklegislativedays.com/press-releases.