Can you help us stop the latest attack on wetlands? 
Act today to save wetlands like these

 Dear wetland advocate,  

A hearing for Assembly Bill 600 will be held at the State Capitol in Madison on Tuesday, January 5th (12pm, Room 417 N).   

Please join us at the Capitol on January 5th to register or testify in opposition to this terrible bill.

Wisconsin Wetlands Association and many conservation partners oppose this bill because it makes it easier to destroy isolated wetlands on privately owned land.  It does so by eliminating long-standing requirements for landowners to avoid and minimize wetland impacts when they build.

AB 600 puts an estimated 1 million acres of Wisconsin's wetlands, 20% of all of the remaining wetlands in the state, at risk.   

AB 600 also puts tens of thousands of acres of emergent, near-shore wetlands in harm's way by authorizing riparian owners to dredge up to 30 cubic yards of soil, annually, from the lake bed and other waters adjacent to their property under a "general" permit.  That's 10 dump trucks of lake bed material removed per year, per landowners, with little to no review. 

Please let WWA's Policy Director, Erin O'Brien know if you are able to join us at the Capitol on January 5th to register or testify in opposition to this bill ([email protected]). Personalized testimony is most effective, but feel free to borrow from the AB 600 talking points below.  

You can also contact Erin with questions about AB 600 or how you can help us stop this bill.  You'll get a holiday auto-responder between now and January 3rd but, trust us, she's working.

As always, we thank you for your interest in wetlands conservation.
Erin O'Brien 
Policy Director, Wisconsin Wetlands Association
Talking Points: AB 600 is bad for Wisconsin and Wisconsin's wetlands because it:
  1. Allows destruction of publicly important resources (isolated wetlands and emergent, near-shore wetlands) for private benefit.
  2. Creates an incentive for people to purchase wetland property for speculative development.
  3. Encourages siting of subdivisions and other development in low-lying agricultural landscapes.
  4. Allows for unfettered development of some of Wisconsin's most valuable wildlife and waterfowl production areas in the state. 
  5. Will increase the annual acreage of permitted wetland destruction far beyond the increases already authorized by the regulatory reforms enacted in 2012.  According to the Wisconsin State Journal, those reforms have already doubled the average amount of authorized wetland development across the state and the required mitigation has not kept pace. 
In fact, not one of the 123 acres of compensatory mitigation required since approval of the new In Lieu Fee mitigation program has been restored.   This delay is not unexpected for a new program, but increasing the volume of wetland fill before this new program is fully implemented and evaluated is unacceptable.