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Four Michigan Bills Could Dramatically Alter State’s Environmental Law

Posted on January 10, 2018 by

Michiganders, we need your help to stop two sets of bills that would undermine existing environmental protections and dramatically change how our environmental laws are implemented. If passed, these bills could impact all environmental law in Michigan, for years to come.

  1. Senate Bill 652 transfers decision-making power from environmental experts to a committee of stakeholders comprised primarily of industry representatives. There is no requirement that committee members have environmental science education, training, or experience—only that they have a stake in the outcome of decisions.
  2. House Bill 5333 creates a “science advisory board” filled with political appointees by the governor. None of these board members are allowed to work at relevant state agencies, such as the Department of Environmental Quality, Department of Natural Resources, or the Department of Agriculture and Rural Development—excluding first-hand knowledge from environmental experts in these departments.  At worst, this advisory board would serve as a political tool. At best, this advisory board would be unnecessary and redundant.
  3. Senate Bill 653 and House Bill 5332 change the appeal process for environmental permit applicants. DEQ decisions—like denied permits for mining or for development in wetlands—could be appealed to a board of the governor’s political appointees, and their decisions would be final.

TAKE ACTION: Email your Michigan senator and representative today. Tell them you want experts—not industry—making the state’s environmental decisions; tell them to vote “NO” on this collection of bills.

@FreshwaterFutur

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