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WCA Commends Senator Harsdorf; Representative Loudenbeck for Protecting County Land and Water Conservation Efforts
- Posted on May 14, 2015
As deliberations continue on the 2015-2017 State Budget by the Joint Finance Committee (JFC), the Wisconsin Counties Association (WCA) is commending JFC members Senator Sheila Harsdorf and Representative Amy Loudenbeck for their work to protect county land and water conservation offices.
On May 12, the Joint Finance Committee approved an amendment by the two legislators to add $675,000 in annual funding for county conservation staffing and cost sharing grants.
“Our county conservation offices do so much for our state, from assisting farmers and other landowners with their conservation challenges to protecting our drinking water, lakes and streams,” said WCA Executive Director Mark D. O’Connell. “Their important work helps create jobs and foster economic growth in many industries including agriculture, tourism, forestry and recreation.”
He continued, “We commend Senator Harsdorf and Representative Loudenbeck for their amendment to include this important funding, as well as the members of JFC for recognizing the critical work of our county conservation offices.”
According to O’Connell, county conservation staff work on the front lines to manage resource challenges, including reducing phosphorus to lakes and streams, and often serve as the “first responders” in the case of floods, droughts and other emergencies.
“The action of Joint Finance to preserve local land and water conservation programs clearly illustrates the importance of conservation to the people of Wisconsin and these efforts can now be viable well into the future,” said O’Connell. “We are grateful to Senator Harsdorf and Representative Loudenbeck for their work in protecting these vital programs.”