Is Breaking Up Hard To Do? Snyder splits DNRE

30 Nov 2010

Last week, I asked, what will the MDNRE under Governor-elect Snyder look like.  Today, we got our first look at the answer.

The Governor-elect announced his intention to undo Governor Granholm’s 2009 executive order merging the former MDNR and MDEQ into the current MDNRE. As part of the split, former agriculture director under both Governors Engler and Granholm, Don Wyant, will head the newly restored Department of Environmental Quality. 

This split makes some sense as the focus of the MDNR has typically been on resource management and recreation while the MDEQ has focused on permitting, enforcement and resource protection.  For those of us around long enough, this is déjà vu all over again as Governor Engler split the old MDNR into the two departments back in 1995.  It lasted that way until the 2009 reunification.   Mr. Wyant will also be the Governor’s group executive for Quality of Life with the charge of streamling the DNR, DEQ and Department of  Agriculture & Rural Development.

While I salute the attitude of streamlining the “business model” of the Department, I wonder whether this is really necessary since they just spent the last 9 months getting their act together as one agency.   Hopefully, Mr. Wyant will also begin to answer some of the many questions that face the State as it tries to encourage green industry and brownfield redevelopment as well as protecting the environment without squelching business growth.

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