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Wisconsin Senate turns down another Evers DNR board appointee

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(The Center Square) – Republicans in the Wisconsin Senate have again said no to one of Gov. Tony Evers’ picks to run the state’s Department of Natural Resources.

The Senate on Tuesday voted 23-9 against Todd Ambs appointment to the natural resources board.

“It is increasingly clear that the majority party will only vote to confirm appointees who espouse Republican orthodoxy, even when there is a Democratic governor appointing them,” Sen. Mark Spreitzer, D-Beloit, said during the vote. “The terms of NRB appointees last six years, longer than one governor’s administration. By not scheduling votes on the appointees who have been unanimously approved in committee, you may be trying to make sure that some future Republican governor can clean house and put in place people with different views on policy. But Gov. Evers is still the governor, and he’ll still be the governor next session. It’s been five years and I’m still waiting for all of you to get used to that.”

Spreitzer told Republican Senators to “do their jobs” and approve the governor’s people.

Sen. Mary Felkzkowsi, R-Tomahawk, said the job of the Senate is to advise and consent on the governor’s appointees. She said their advice is that the governor appoint people who are not partisan or power-hungry.

“I concede that Todd Ambs has a lot of knowledge. Absolutely, he does. I know a lot of people that have a lot of knowledge – but when you have someone who is power-hungry at the DNR and does everything in his power to hurt the aquaculture industry in Northern Wisconsin, and basically sits back and says ‘Well, you guys don’t have the power. I do.’ I’ve been in those meetings with Todd Ambs on numerous occasions,” Felzkowski said.

She told Spreizter that Republican senators simply want appointees to the DNR board and others that are willing to work.

She then challenged Evers to find those people.

“My ask of Gov. Evers going forward, is to please appoint people who are willing to work with liberals, who are willing to work with conservatives, the Green Party, independents, whomever,” Felzkowski added. “I will just use Gov. Evers’ words ‘We’re not a Blue state, we’re not a Red state, we’re a purple state.’ So, we are asking him to send us appointees who are willing to work with all.”

Ambs is now the fifth Evers DNR Board appointee to be denied by Republicans in the Senate.

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