Wausau Chamber of Commerce Opposes Environmental Justice With Apparently Little Support


8/14/21 Update: The City of Wausau has compiled written public comment that it received relating to the Environmental Justice Resolution and it can be found at the founding link and embedded below.

https://www.ci.wausau.wi.us/Portals/0/Departments/Council/Archives/Council/Council/2021/COUN_20210810_Packet3.pdf

According to multiple local news sources, the Greater Wausau Chamber of Commerce has come out as the main opponent to Wausau’s Environmental Justice Resolution. Interestingly, the once powerful entity appears to enjoy little support on the issue in Central Wisconsin.

The Greater Wausau Chamber of Commerce came out swinging against Wausau’s Environmental Justice Resolution. So far, it has swung and missed.

Wausau Pilot & Review:
https://wausaupilotandreview.com/2021/08/09/wausau-chamber-opposes-proposed-environmental-justice-measure/

WAOW:
https://waow.com/2021/08/04/a-resolution-addressing-environmental-harm-is-causing-controversy/

WSAW:
https://www.wsaw.com/2021/08/10/opposition-surrounds-proposed-wausau-environmental-justice-resolution/

The Chamber of Commerce seems to be receiving relatively little support in Wausau for its objections to the resolution.

The last time that the Chamber came out so strongly and failed was likely related to Wausau’s debate and referendum on a city administrator.

One major detractor from the local Chamber’s position is that the state Chamber of Commerce is currently suing the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources to limit its authority to regulate hazardous substances like PFAS.

Other weaknesses of the Chamber’s position are that it is heavily involved in an Opportunity Zone in Wausau, and also the ambassador for the Greater Wausau Prosperity Partnership. How does an entity shepherd economically distressed areas and the cause of diversity while also opposing Environmental Justice? Logically — it cannot.

Tomorrow, the Wausau City Council will vote on an Environmental Justice Resolution that echoes federal and state agencies’ positions on the matter. The current local Chamber, once referenced as part of the Wausau Group 2.0, appears to be facing increasing scrutiny and criticism in Central Wisconsin on environmental matters.


COUN_20210810_Packet3

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