Friday, October 20, 2017

Scott Walker, clean-up on aisle '18

That the GOP/Walker-led WI government is maneuvering, spinning or burying some major public policy problems suggests that Walker's 2018 re-election announcement is imminent.

Call it the pre-campaign de-cluttering. Might work. Might not, but what's partisan and self-preserving will take precedence over the public interest when Walker and his allies are involved.

*  The DNR has settled a power play lawsuit on terms favorable to the special interest that brought it - - Big Dairy - - which means there will be more muck flowing from big CAFOs already running amok.

The dairy interests claimed that the DNR was over-regulating them even though state auditors had found multiple problems with DNR enforcement actions, and the term "nitrate nightmare" has shown up in recent new reporting in La Crosse.

In case you don't think the settlement was on Big Dairy's terms, read no further than the headline on the industry's reaction:
Dairy Business Association wins victory in settlement of lawsuit with state regulators
Though environmental organizations had petitioned to intervene in the litigation, so this may not be the end of the story.

*  Work continues behind the scenes to fix the multi-billion tax dollar and water rights giveaway contract the WEDC has delayed signing with Foxconn, and to date, WEDC has managed the story by a) keeping secret what has been FUBAR, and b) not using, so far as I can see, words which can never again be associated with Walker: "drafting error."

Though "cover up" does cover it.

*  And while the state touts awarding municipalities some federal funds for lead removal, I do not see any new state dollars to supplement already-insufficient state appropriations to address this critical public health activity in Walker's 2017-'19 state budget.

Final thought.

These issues are still rolls of the dice for Team Walker.

A pollution event at a big Wisconsin dairy operation or fresh findings of lead contamination in drinking water systems, given what is already known from Flint and other cities' experiences, won't make for great campaign optics.

And if the Foxconn contract 'fix' ever surfaces, a drafting error due to simple human or computing incompetencies would actually look better than someone in the Walker machine having inserted an unspeakably sour concession at public expense in what was already the sweetest deal for a business in state history.

Stay tuned.


Anonymous said...

The public health effects of lead poisoning on fetuses are preventable. It's so sad that the governor and our legislature haven't seen fit to take care of those fetuses whose mother's happen to live in Milwaukee.

Jake formerly of the LP said...

The sellout to the Big At slime at the DBA is one of the undercovered stories of the week. How much is Walker and Schimel getting paid to look the other way?

And why aren't Dems screaming their heads off and running ads on this obvious corruption TODAY?

Jake formerly of the LP said...
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