Though the remakes of the DNR and the UW system should be more than mere budget items, here's the schedule from our friends at River Alliance of Wisconsin of hearings on the entire budget set up by the GOP-controlled Joint Committee on Finance. Note the small town focus, and no hearing for the public in Madison, Green Bay, La Crosse, Stevens Point, Eau Claire, etc.
Brillion Budget Hearing
Brillion High School, Endries Performing Arts Center, W1101 County Road HR, Brillion
Wednesday, March 18, 10:00 a.m. - 5:00 p.m.
Milwaukee Budget Hearing
Alverno College, Pitman Theatre, 3400 south 43rd Street, Milwaukee
Friday, March 20, 10:00 a.m. - 5:00 p.m.
Rice Lake Budget Hearing
UW Barron County, Fine Arts Theatre, 1800 College Drive, Rice Lake
Monday, March 23, 10:00 a.m. - 5:00 p.m.
Reedsburg Budget Hearing
Reedsburg High School CAL Center Auditorium, 1100 South Albert Avenue, Reedsburg
Thursday, March 26, 9:30 a.m. - 4:00 p.m.
Good message with the notice from the River Alliance:
The Joint Finance Committee has announced four official hearings across the state to take public comments about the Governor's proposed 2015-2017 Budget. These hearings give lawmakers an idea of what is important to the public and what changes might not be good or appropriate for our state. Protection of clean water, and the ability for everyday citizens to have a meaningful say in managing our state's resources, has taken a big hit in this budget.
The comments they receive help lawmakers decide what they will and will not support or change in the budget. This budget is not good for water in Wisconsin in many ways:
1. It freezes the Stewardship Program which protects valuable lands (and waters) for all Wisconsinites;
2. It cuts over $6M to programs aimed at reducing urban and rural polluted runoff to our rivers, streams, lakes and wetlands (the top water quality problem in the state);
3. It guts DNR science which has been essential to managing our waters for healthy fisheries, endangered species and the many uses we have come to rely on our waters for;
4. It eliminates the Natural Resources Board, a citizen board appointed by the Governor to oversee DNRs management of our resources;
5. It cuts funding to groups whose mission is to engage citizens all around the state in helping to manage the lands, waters and resources they care about.