Michigan’s new Governor, Rick Snyder, has split the DEQ and DNR back into two separate divisions. Simply put, the DNR focuses primarily on resource issues, land, water, wildlife, and recreation regarding them. The DEQ is geared towards the environment as it relates to pollution and chiefly is there to protect the environment.
The DEQ is an important part of the business climate in Michigan. The DEQ is a regulatory division of government so the decisions it makes as far as laws and regulations and their enforcement can have significant effects on the community and business. I see the separation as an important step because they serve very different purposes. I am hopeful that the separation allows the DEQ to focus on keeping our air, soil, and waterways clean and pristine while allowing for businesses to develop or expand. It’s a difficult balance and is a small and important piece to the Michigan economy puzzle.
For the outdoor enthusiasts this simply narrows the focus of the DNR back to where it was. I don’t think we’ll see any immediate impacts from the DNR’s end. Michigan’s DNR has made some curious decisions in recent history but I believe we have, if not the best, one of the top Natural Resource agencies right here in Michigan and this helps to keep the DNR focused and effective. I think it’s a win-win.
I’ve seen concern over paying additional department heads but I think that the effective management of these two divisions is far more important than the extra salary. From a percentages stand pint, the extra salary is a rather small part of the equation. How much they are paid may be a different issue to look at.
Hopefully this small and simple explanation gives you the basics you need.
Happy new Year everyone.