GOP Pro-Local -- Except When It's Not
One of the unifying principles of the Republican party and consevative belief is more-local control. The more the individual can be responsible, the better. On a large scale, that explains opposition to federal programs compared to state or local governance, or private industry. Fair enough, it's a point of view, nothing inherently right or wrong. What IS wrong is when Republicans -- like those in Wisconsin -- decide that local control is bad because it doesn't fit their pro-business goals.
That seems the background intention of a bill proposed by Sen. Tom Tiffany from northeast Wisconsin, which would take away powers of local townships to pass ordinances for safety and health reasons preventing the construction of sand mines. This is critical, as these townships don't have the usual route of passing zoning ordinances. Additionally, the DNR would have the authority over local officials to set regulations of air and water quality, while restricting the DNR's ability to set such regulations compared to state standards. Also, it would keep local governments from making sand mining companies pay in advance for road improvements, rather making them wait until any money is necessary for repairs.
The bill is in its earliest stage, but you can imagine where this will go with full GOP control in Madison (though some more-moderate Republican senators might raise objections in the 18-15 Senate). A party that stands for local control is taking it away for the sake of business. A party that believes in the power of the indivudal belies the larger government should have the final say. The Republicans supporting this bill are hypocrites, plain and simple, and are not interested in the health and safety of our residents and quality of our land.
Wisconsin, open for business -- the business that best benefits the Republican Party.