Environmental Protection Commission Meets

March 21, 2019

The Environmental Protection Commission (EPC) held a teleconference on March 19. Acting Director Bruce Trautman provided an update to members of the commission and noted the primary concern at the DNR is the flooding in Western Iowa. The DNR is involved in “rescue, evacuation and recovery.” Director Trautman also mentioned they have been tracking HF 199 “relating to beverage container handling fees paid by distributors to beverage dealers and persons operating beverage container redemption centers.” The bill was in the Environmental Protection Committee, but did not survive funnel. They are also monitoring SF 503 and HF 512 “relating to fee programs for permittee participation in lieu of required compensatory mitigation of stream and wetland impacts and making appropriations.” ABI is currently undecided on the legislation and has been monitoring it throughout the session, as it could affect members who have to do mitigation projects. Lastly, he mentioned they do not have any information on the search for a new director.

Multiple items were approved during the formal business portion of the meeting, including, “contracts for transporting a mobile education trailer, analyzing water quality samples from shallow lakes and linking two water quality databases.”  Of specific interest to ABI members, the air quality budget was presented. It was noted by a commissioner that in the coming months they will have a better idea of what unspent funds are available. The EPC will plan to approve the proposed air quality budget at the May meeting unless there are changes during the public comment period. For more information about this meeting, please contact Drew Wynes.