May 2, Governor Walker announced a series of emergency rules to slow the spread of chronic wasting disease in Wisconsin. Some said the rules were a campaign ploy, others in his own political party felt the rules went too far.
Monday, the legislature's Rules committee, led by Republicans, held a hearing to see what could be done to modify those rules. The Natural Resources Board had approved the changes. The Rules committee can modify the board's actions. Deer farm owners don't like the cost of the mandated additional fencing.
State Senator Tom Tiffany of Hazelhurst says another of the changes brought out opposition from deer hunters...
"....In particular, in regard to carcass movement across county lines there was a lot of concern I heard from sportsmen that this carcass movement was really going to be detrimental to deer hunting..."
Tiffany says many people have hunting cabins in one county and hunt in another nearby county. He predicts the carcass moving provision will be changed. He says the committee will forward its recommendations to be debated.
Deer farm owners said the provisions to add additional fencing would be prohibitively expensive. The rules call for deer farms that have CWD infection to install a second fence or solid barrier. CWD-free deer farms can add a second fence, add a solid barrier or add an electric fence. The total cost for all the farms could exceed $1 million dollars, but is probably higher.
Governor Walker directed a state agency to create an emergency and permanent rule banning the movement of deer from deer farms in CWD-affected counties.