February 13, 2024

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Senator Cowles Celebrates Passage of

Safe Drinking Water Access Legislation

MADISON – Senator Robert Cowles (R-Green Bay) released the following statement after Senate Bill 58, which he authored with Representative Joel Kitchens, passed the Senate on a voice vote during Tuesday’s floor period:

“Wisconsinites deserve to know that the water they drink is free of harmful nitrates. High nitrate levels have been shown to cause serious health issues in women and newborn children,” Senator Cowles stated. “Building on previous water quality work advanced by the Legislature, Senate Bill 58 opens up more eligibility for important grant funding to tackle these contaminants while ensuring proper oversight is maintained. These funds will deliver aid where it is most critically needed, and will help protect the health and welfare of rural residents across Wisconsin.”

Senate Bill 58 makes a series of changes to the state’s Well Compensation Grant Program to address nitrate and bacterial contamination. The bill expands grant eligibility, helping more well owners across Wisconsin apply for this important funding. It also establishes a tiered system to ensure well owners with the highest levels of nitrate in their water receive the most urgent care. Senator Cowles and Representative Kitchens also authored this bill with Senators Patrick Testin and Joan Ballweg, as well as Representatives Todd Novak, Katrina Shankland, and Scott Krug.