MADISON – The Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources is accepting public input as part of the process for the 2018-2020 Triennial Standards Review on water quality.
Every three years, all states are required under the federal Clean Water Act to review their water quality standards. Topics evaluated in the review include policies, rules and guidance related to designated uses, water quality criteria, antidegradation and variances.
“This water quality review helps the DNR focus our efforts on the best ways to protect the health of Wisconsin’s lakes, rivers and streams,” said Marcia Willhite, DNR Water Resources Management specialist.
Willhite said the review consists of several steps. First, the department asks for topics from the public and DNR partners on water quality standards. If members of the public have suggestions for revisions or improvements to DNR’s policies, rules and guidance related to designated uses, water quality criteria, antidegradation and variances, they can complete the topic suggestion document found by searching the DNR website for “Triennial Standards Review.” The deadline to submit a topic suggestion is January 25.
The department then asks the public, partners and staff to rank these topics, and holds a public hearing to provide additional information on the topics under consideration. The department then prioritizes the topics based on the input from the survey and prepares a final report.
The ranking, public hearing and final report may be completed by the spring of 2018. Work then begins on implementing the priority topics, which can take a year or more depending on the topic.
Questions or comments on the Triennial Standards Review should be directed to Marcia Willhite at Marcia.Willhite@wisconsin.gov or 920-746-2875. More information on the review process and past reviews can also be found can be found on the triennial standards review page of the DNR website.