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Gov. Snyder vetoes bill aimed at eliminating goal of "biodiversity" in forest management

Jan 15, 2015

Forestland in Michigan's northern Lower Peninsula. State Sen. Tom Casperson wanted to prevent the state from eliminating invasive species, among other things.
Credit user {inercia} / Flickr

Today, Michigan Gov. Rick Snyder vetoed a bill that attempted to keep state officials from managing the state's forests and parks for biodiversity.

Senate Bill 78 was sponsored by State Senator Tom Casperson, R-Escanaba, and it passed the Michigan Legislature during last year's "lame duck" session.

From Gov. Snyder's veto letter:

Today I am returning to you enrolled Senate Bill 78 without signature. I believe that biodiversity is an essential component of sustainable forest management, a principle affirmed throughout this legislation.

The proposed legislation -- specifically the re-definition of the conservation of biological diversity and the complete elimination of designation options -- causes confusion and inconsistencies and could make it more difficult to sustainably manage Michigan's Public forests and world class natural resources to meet the changing needs of current and future generations.

More than 130 scientists and state environmental groups called on Gov. Snyder to veto the legislation.

Those groups praised Governor Snyder's decision today.