DNR hires manager to speed environmental permitting for Foxconn

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The Department of Natural Resources has already brought on a project manager to oversee the expected streamlined environmental permitting for a proposed Foxconn manufacturing plant, Secretary Cathy Stepp said last week. A Walker appointee, Stepp said the DNR is ready to go. > Madison.com

Will DNR chief join U.S. EPA wrecking crew?

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Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources Secretary Cathy Stepp has confirmed to the Journal Sentinel that she’s been discussing joining the Trump administration. Would she accept an offer? “Depends on what the job would be,” Stepp said. > Urban Milwaukee

DNR chief says less oversight will speed Foxconn review

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State DNR Secretary Cathy Stepp said Wednesday her agency supports removing regulatory hurdles for Foxconn’s massive electronics plant, but she said environmental standards won’t be compromised. Stepp also said she has hired a dedicated project manager to oversee regulatory responsibilities for the $10 billion project. > Milwaukee Journal Sentinel

Foxconn will require slew of environmental reviews, landing on plate of reduced DNR

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Foxconn’s plans for a sprawling plant will trigger a massive and complex review effort by Wisconsin regulators at a time when the DNR is grappling with a depleted workforce. “You already have people working at full capacity and then you bring in a big project like this,” said Doyle-era DNR chief Matt Frank. > Marshfield News Herald

Wisconsin moves to protect groundwater with rules limiting manure spreading

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After years of complaints about manure spreading and its potential to harm drinking water – and prodding from environmental groups and rural residents – DNR officials are advancing first-ever rules to limit animal waste on vulnerable soils in 15 eastern Wisconsin counties. Tailoring runoff regulations by region is a first for Wisconsin. > Milwaukee Journal Sentinel

Walker, DNR secretary slowly dismantling state’s conservation agency

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The weakening of the Wisconsin DNR continues full steam ahead under the leadership of Gov. Walker and DNR Secretary Cathy Stepp. The pending state budget will likely spell the beginning of the end for the DNR magazine and the elimination of the forestry mill tax, all while the DNR is reducing its state fair presence. > Outdoor News

Environmental groups sue DNR over Monroe County frac sand permits

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Midwest Environmental Advocates and Clean Wisconsin have challenged the Wisconsin DNR’s approval of a Monroe County frac sand operation, saying it would be the largest single destruction of wetlands in the state for an industrial frac sand project. > La Crosse Tribune