Today, the Assembly Committee on Federalism & Interstate Relations held a public hearing on two bills within the “Air Quality & Economic Opportunity” Reforms Package authored by Representative Jesse Kremer (R-Kewaskum). These two bills, AB587 and AB588, would attempt to remove burdensome policies that are stifling Wisconsin businesses and depressing the quality of life for our lower, middle, and fixed income constituents. This artificial economic inequality from one region to the next has become known as “No-Growth Zones.”
“State lawmakers are the representative voice of their constituents.” said Rep. Kremer. “Well-intentioned, decades old policies by the federal government and unelected bureaucrats at the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and Department of Natural Resources (DNR) have had unnecessary and devastating outcomes. The same science used in creating these air policies is now being ignored in how they are regulated and enforced. I have listened to my constituents and teamed up with other concerned colleagues in hopes that we can tackle the disparaging economic impact that the federal, and state government, have had on Wisconsin residents and businesses. Now is the time to liberate our ‘No Growth’ zones.”
AB587 would require the state Department of Natural Resources to remove an air monitor in Sheboygan County that measures Chicago air and pushes the Sheboygan region into a “non-attainment” classification. To ensure air quality is still monitored, an existing more scientifically placed monitor downwind of the City of Sheboygan and its industrial sector would be used. The State Air Emissions Rules Review, AB588, creates a common sense regulatory review process for all state exclusive air rules every 10 years, similar to the 5 year federal regulatory review process. This bill would also require the initial repeal of all state air regulations, setting the federal standard as a baseline, ensuring that going forward the DNR would have to scientifically review and resubmit any existing or new rules for approval through the REINS Act process.
Coming on the heels of the Foxconn investment package bill signing, WI lawmakers should ensure that Wisconsin is moving forward for all residents, businesses and entrepreneurs. Legislation focused on cutting red tape and pushing back on federal overreach will continue to move Wisconsin forward. These reforms represent a clear catalyst that will allow all businesses to unlock opportunities on an equal playing field – no matter where they may be located.