Permitting shift to DATCP: As part of his rural agenda, Gov. Scott Walker announced his intent to seek a transfer of the regulatory authority of large farms from DNR to DATCP. Walker originally included a study of the proposal in his budget last February, but it did not make it into the final budget. DBA will be working closely with the governor’s office and DATCP to see this proposal through.
New DATCP leadership: Gov.Walker appointed state Sen. Sheila Harsdorf to be the new DATCP secretary. Since Harsdorf began in her new role in mid-November, long-time DATCP aide Keeley Moll was named deputy secretary and Sandy Chalmers was named Wisconsin’s FSA director. She previously served as assistant deputy secretary at DATCP.
“America’s Dairyland” bill: Rep. Scott Allen, R-Waukesha, circulated a proposal to create a contest for high schoolers to redesign Wisconsin’s license plate to replace the slogan “America’s Dairyland.” After a heavy outcry from dairy and agriculture leaders across the state, Gov. Walker announced his support of keeping our long-standing and traditional slogan.