Groups call on Holcomb to veto wetlands bill

Indiana

INDIANAPOLIS (AP) — Calls are mounting for Gov. Eric Holcomb to veto a bill that would remove some protections from Indiana’s already diminished wetlands amid mounting criticism that it could damage waterways, wildlife and vegetation.

Eagle Marsh in Fort Wayne is shown April 27, 2021.

The wetlands measure passed out of the Legislature April 14 and has sparked bipartisan opposition within the Republican-dominated Legislature.

Environmental activists, all Democratic members of the General Assembly, and a member of the Senate Republican Caucus, have urged the Republican governor to veto the bill.

Bill sponsors say the current law is too vague and that removal of state protections would help developers and grow the housing market.

Indra Frank, director of environmental health and water policy at the Hoosier Environmental Council, said there’s a better way to update state wetland mandates.

“Things like streamlining the wetland permitting process by aligning it better with how the federal wetlands are treated, working on clarifying some of the exemptions, also, the state could increase the incentives for preserving wetlands,” said Frank.

Holcomb’s office said he’s still reviewing the bill.

Copyright 2021 Nexstar Media Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

Trending Stories

Don't Miss