WAPAC Legislative Committee Update
This past spring, WAPAC retained Jordan Lamb, an attorney with Dewitt, Ross, and Stevens and the Chair of their Government Relations Practice Group to lobby for us on issues pertinent to both crop consultants and our farmer clients.
Jordan updated WAPAC members at the 2017 New Horizons Seminar on her activities on our behalf after discussing how bills are potentially created, moved through the Legislature and the process for endorsing or disputing them.
Topics addressed were
- The 24 month Legislative calendar
- The WI biennial budget cycle process
- High capacity well legislation
- The lawsuit filed by the Dairy Business Association regarding calf hutches and Vegetated Treatment Areas and the settlement reached there at this point
- The proposed revisions of DATCP 51 Livestock Siting rule
- The pending wetland bills
- The proposed NR151 rules.
There was good discussion on the background for the Governor's plan to move CAFO oversight from DNR to DATCP. Members raised questions they had about other topics as well, and Jordan gave us her opinion on where we may be heading and items to ‘stay tuned’ for or to keep on our minds moving forward.
Jordan emphasized that there will be times where it will be important for WAPAC members to weigh in at public hearings and there will be other times (as with NR151) when our written comments will be appropriate. Either way, our technical expertise will be better leveraged and represented with Jordan as our representative.