The Senate Bill 459 was introduced to Wisconsin State Legislators on Oct. 18, 2017.
The bill was authored by Sen. Duey Stroebel who is also the chair of the Senate Committee on Government Operations, Technology and Consumer Protection where the bill is currently up for discussion. Other authors include Senators Craig, Nass and Kapenga.
Michael Tapia, junior political science major, said, “This bill is representative of what is happening at the federal level, the relaxation of critical environmental laws in the hopes of making businesses more profitable. However, in the long run, it could hurt businesses because if areas of Wisconsin’s natural landscapes are impacted through these changes, tourism could decrease.”
The bill was first read and refereed to the committee signifying that the title of the bill was read and immediately assigned to the committee. The bill is now up for consideration by the committee between the first and second readings at a later date.
The analysis by the Legislature Reference Bureau stated “This bill requires the Department of Natural Resources to identify and repeal all administrative rules promulgated by DNR that relate to the regulation of air pollutants that are not regulated under federal law.”
The bill states, “The DNR shall repeal all identified rules no later than December 31, 2018.” This means that all the rules and laws that were found to be stricter than federal law will be removed by Dec. 31, 2018.
However, there are individuals who agree with the purpose of the bill such as Andrew Romanesca, senior paper science and engineering major. Romanesca said, “There is no reason a state should have more or stricter environmental laws than the federal level. The red tape from these unnecessary laws are financially costly to small businesses around Wisconsin, therefore I am glad this bill exists and will be discussed.”
Currently, there have not been any public hearings regarding this bill nor are there any scheduled in the immediate future at this moment. Interested individuals are able to voice their concerns and opinions at public meetings as well as monitor the committee’s calendar for updates through the Wisconsin State Legislator’s website.
The entirety of the bill is available for the public to read at https://docs.legis.wisconsin.gov/2017/related/proposals/sb459. To comment on this Senate Bill, contact representatives through the Wisconsin State Legislature website by input of a residential address.