Monday, March 17, 2008

Lt. Governors Adopt Great Lakes Compact Resolution

Mar 14: At its winter meeting on March 13, the National Lieutenant Governors Association (NLGA) unanimously supported a resolution that encourages state legislatures in the region to quickly pass Great Lakes Compact legislation that will protect and preserve Michigan's greatest natural resource. Michigan Lt. Governor John Cherry co-sponsored the resolution. Cherry, former chair of the NLGA, said that the resolution also urges all three presidential candidates from both parties to outline their plans and priority actions for Great Lakes restoration and protection that will be initiated in 2009 and beyond.

Cherry said, "This resolution sends two clear messages: State legislatures around the region -- including our own here in Michigan -- must ratify the Great Lakes Compact as soon as possible, and individuals who are interested in being our country's next president must outline in detail what they plan to do to protect and preserve our Great Lakes. Our country's next president must make the Great Lakes a top priority -- both today and tomorrow." The resolution was sponsored by Lt. Governor Barbara Lawton (D-WI), and Lt. Governor Carol Molnau (R-MN).

Four states have now enacted the Compact including: MN; IL; IN; and NY. WI, OH and PA have all passed a bill in one legislative Chamber. MI has bills pending on the floor of both Chambers awaiting a final vote. Recently, however, the bills in the Ohio and Wisconsin legislatures have become bogged down in political controversy and their future is in doubt [
See WIMS 2/19/08]. When all eight state legislatures in the Great Lakes region pass the Great Lakes Compact, Congress will be asked to provide its consent, which will turn the compact into state and Federal law.

Access a release including a copy of the resolution (
click here). Access the current status of enacting the Compact from the Council of Great Lakes Governors (click here).