Wisconsin DNR Seeks Dismissal of Lawsuit

The Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources (DNR) is asking judges to dismiss a lawsuit challenging the agency’s authority to overrule another judge’s findings regarding a Monroe County frac sand processing facility.

Last month Clean Wisconsin and the Ho-Chunk Nation filed suits in Monroe and Dane county courts claiming DNR Secretary Dan Meyer overstepped his authority when he agreed to review an administrative law judge’s ruling that had invalidated a permit issued to Meteor Timber for the proposed $75 million processing and loading facility.

In court briefs filed on behalf of the DNR, attorneys from the Wisconsin Department of Justice argued that the courts have no standing to review Meyer’s decision because it is not final, according to the LaCrosse Tribune.

Administrative law Judge Eric Defort ruled in May that the DNR didn’t have information required by state law when it issued a permit, allowing Meteor to fill 16.25 acres of wetlands near Millston, Wis. His decision to reverse the permit followed a five-day hearing during which several former DNR employees said the agency granted the permit in spite of its own staff findings and a list of unanswered questions.

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