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Governor Announces Sweeping Changes

Feb 08, 2019

On Monday, Governor Gretchen Whitmer issued two executive orders and an executive directive making changes to environmental oversight in Michigan.

  • Executive Order 2019-2: Restructures the Department of Environmental Quality as the Department of Environment, Great Lakes, and Energy. It creates new offices within the department, including the Office of the Clean Water Public Advocate, the Office of the Environmental Justice Public Advocate, and the Interagency Environmental Justice Response Team. Creates a new office of climate and energy that will work with the governor to mitigate the impacts of climate change, reduce greenhouse gas emissions, and embrace more sustainable energy solutions.
  • Executive Order 2019-3: Strengthens the Michigan PFAS Action Response Team in an effort to inform the public about PFAS, locate contamination, and take action to protect sources of drinking water from these chemicals.
  • Executive Directive 2019-12: Enters Michigan into the U.S. Climate Alliance, a bipartisan coalition of governors from 19 other states that have committed to reducing greenhouse gas emissions consistent with the goals of the Paris Agreement.

“On Wednesday, the House of Representatives passed a concurrent resolution that would reject Executive Order 2019-12. If the Senate also passes the resolution, the governor’s order would not take effect,” explained Tim Ward, President of MLC. The Republican caucus does not agree with the elimination of the Environmental Rules Committee, the Environmental Permit Review Committee, and the Environmental Science Advisory Board, which the order eliminates. The concurrent resolution has been referred to the Senate Oversight Committee.

The same day, Governor Whitmer asked Attorney General Dana Nessel to review the legality of the Environmental Rules Review Committee and the Environmental Permit Review Commission.

Michigan Legislative Consultants is a bipartisan lobbying firm based in Lansing, Michigan. Our team of lobbyists and procurement specialists provide a wide range of services for some of the most respected companies in America. For more on MLC, visit www.mlcmi.com or connect with us on LinkedIn and Twitter.