FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE Contact: Rep. Cory Mason (608) 266-0634
May 15, 2013
Republicans Gut Stewardship
‘Reckless proposal jeopardizes the future of the program’
MADISON – State Representative Cory Mason (D-Racine), the ranking Assembly Democrat on the Legislature’s Joint Committee on Finance, issued the following statement in response to the Committee’s biennial budget action today on the Wisconsin’s Warren Knowles-Gaylord Nelson Stewardship program:
“The reckless and irresponsible stewardship motion Republicans passed today jeopardizes the future of this program and for the first time, converts Wisconsin’s stewardship policy into one of selling 10,000 acres of hunting and natural habitat.
After cutting the Stewardship program by 30 percent in their last biennial budget, Republicans today approved an additional 22 percent cut to this important program which preserves state land and makes it available for Wisconsin’s hunters, anglers, campers, and others who enjoy our state’s natural resources.
The proposal Republicans included in the state budget today not only guts funding for stewardship of our public lands, but it turns the program into the worst kind of earmark and policy wish list for those who want to end, cap, or curtail the Stewardship program.
For years, the stewardship program has been served very well and in a bipartisan manner by not succumbing to pressure to carve out exceptions and new purposes. Today’s Republican motion is an awful example of policy run amok.”
The motion approved today by the Committee’s Republican members contained more than five pages of policy changes to the Stewardship program.