By: State Rep. Katrina Shankland 7/31/19 Urban Milwaukee
WATERTOWN – Today, Rep. Katrina Shankland (D-Stevens Point) joined Governor Tony Evers, as well as Department of Natural Resources (DNR) Secretary-designee Preston Cole and Department of Agriculture, Trade, and Consumer Protection (DATCP) Secretary-designee Brad Pfaff in Watertown for the announcement of new state efforts to address nitrate contamination. These efforts will include rulemaking by DNR through NR 151 to reduce nitrate contamination in the areas of Wisconsin that are most at risk.
In response, Rep. Shankland issued the following statement:
“I’ve always believed that actions speak louder than words. Governor Evers declared 2019 the Year of Clean Drinking Water, and he has followed his words up with action over and over again. Governor Evers has demonstrated incredible leadership and a strong commitment to ensuring access to clean drinking water for everyone in Wisconsin, and I was honored to join him for today’s announcement.
“These new efforts by the Governor, DNR, and DATCP tackle the root of our pollution runoff problems and will help to prevent future nitrate contamination. Launching a statewide conversation on NR 151 and bringing farmers, scientists, county conservationists, and local and state leaders together to reduce nitrate contamination will make a meaningful difference in communities across the state.
“In Portage County, one in four private wells that were recently tested were contaminated by nitrate above the federal health standard, and in some communities across the Central Sands and Southwest Wisconsin, over 40% of private wells are undrinkable due to nitrate contamination. Everyone should be able to drink water from their taps, and with the new NR 151 efforts addressing the most sensitive regions in the state, we can prevent future widespread contamination.
“I have never been more excited and hopeful than I am today for the future of clean water in our state. I look forward to working with Governor Evers, our state agencies, and my legislative colleagues to achieve our shared goal of clean and safe drinking water for everyone in our state.”