Conservation Congress Spring Hearings April 2024

WI Green Fire, April 3, 2024

Help shape conservation policies during the Wisconsin Conservation Congress “Spring Hearings” this April. 

Photo: Dr. F Eugene Hester, USFWS

Every spring, the Wisconsin Conservation Congress and the Department of Natural Resources (DNR) seek input from the public on natural resources policies. Since 1934, these “Spring Hearings,” have been an important part of Wisconsin’s conservation legacy, when Wisconsinites from every county can provide input on fisheries, wildlife, and other conservation matters. Now is the time to use your voice!

This year, you can provide advice on 49 conservation issues that range from hunting and fishing regulations to wake boats, PFAS, and ballast water. The DNR is seeking your feedback on 12 conservation matters. The other 37 advisory questions originate from citizen resolutions. Review all 49 questions here. 

For the Spring Hearings, you can attend the in-person meetings or provide your input online. 

If you attend your county’s in-person meeting, you can help select your county’s delegates for the Conservation Congress. With five delegates from each of the 72 counties, the 360-member Conservation Congress has a special advisory role to the Natural Resources Board on all conservation matters.  

Why is Wisconsin’s Green Fire encouraging you to take part in this opportunity?  

The Spring Hearings present an important way to engage in our mission to advance science-informed policy solutions that address Wisconsin’s greatest conservation challenges. From lead and PFAS to wake boats and more, several topics in the 2024 questionnaire fit with our strategic priorities of Conservation of Biodiversity and Contaminants of Emerging Concern.  

Learn more about the Spring Hearings here. 

Wisconsin Conservation Congress flyer Spring Hearings 2024

Flyer: Spring Hearings 2024 via the DNR

What is the Conservation Congress? 

From the DNR: “The State Conservation Commission (the predecessor of the Natural Resources Board) created the Conservation Congress in 1934. The purpose was to provide Wisconsin citizens with a local avenue for input and exchange concerning conservation issues. In 1972, Governor Patrick Lucey signed legislation that legally recognized the Conservation Congress (Statute 15.348), to ensure that citizens would have a liaison between the Natural Resources Board and the Department of Natural Resources. 

The vision of the Wisconsin Conservation Congress is to strengthen and enhance our ability to gather and convey the wisdom and influence of Wisconsin citizens in the formation of natural resource policy, research, education, and conservation.” 

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