WLCV calls for massive public response to stop the "Polluters over People" Bill

Amy Lou Jenkins, Milwaukee Green Living Examiner

October 22, 2011 - Like this? Subscribe to get instant updates.

Voters called for a massive pubic response to oppose Special Session Assembly Bill 24. This bill  was expected  to be a bad bill.  But the enormity of damage and revocation of citizen rights in favor of polluters rights startled the even the most cynical of  Wisconsin conservationists. 

"We thought this bill would be about mining. It is. But it goes much, much further than that." Said Anne N. Sayers, Program Director,Wisconsin League of Conservation Voters.

The Polluters over People Bill isn't getting  a lot of press, which is alarming.  The bill was expected to address mining concerns, but it goes to the heart of who protects natural resources. It asks that business/pollutors take charge. It removes safeguards that stand in the way from environmental devastation. The bill:

Allows polluters to self-regulate and further weakens the DNR. The authority, manpower, and role of the DNR are eroded so that the name "Department of Natural Resourses" provides only a historical connection to an abased mission statement.

Cuts the public out of the decisions that affect the local resources that provide life to the community by changing the process of how decisions are made for construction or dredging in and near waterways.  

Guts other protections for Wisconsin waterways.

Provides presumtive approval for prospecting (mining), so the people and waterways will be subject to the assumption that miners are automatically driven to act in the public interest rather than their own self interest

The Bill fails to create any jobs.

According the WLCV the bill also makes "some very specific changes in law to reward Govenor Walker's Campaign donors."     Source: Frequently asked Questions Bill SB/AB 24 aks the Polluters Over People Bill