Detroit Free Press: Congresswomen want Great Lakes water diversion blocked
WASHINGTON — Two Michigan congresswomen wrote Gov. Rick Snyder on Thursday asking him to vote to deny a Wisconsin city’s request to divert 8 million gallons of drinking water a day.
Snyder and other Great Lakes governors — or their representatives — are expected to meet in Chicago in late June to consider whether to grant the diversion request by Waukesha, Wis., under the Great Lakes Compact.
U.S. Reps. Candice Miller, R-Harrison Township, and Debbie Dingell, D-Dearborn, urged Snyder to reject the request, saying it would be a “precedent-setting setback.” The Great Lakes-St. Lawrence River Basin Water Resources Regional Body recently gave preliminary approval to the proposal.
“The compact allows for water diversion to communities within the basin, but only under rare and strict conditions,” Miller and Dingell wrote Snyder. “We do not believe the city of Waukesha has made a compelling case.”
Officials in Waukesha, about 15 miles from Lake Michigan, have said it needs drinking water because of radium and other contaminants in the groundwater. But Miller and Dingell said they did not believe that the city had exhausted all of its options for providing water service.
“It takes all eight governors to approve the request for diversion. We believe you have the ability to stop this latest attempt to pillage our magnificent lakes and protect (them) for future generations,” the two wrote. “We ask that you do the right thing.”
Gov. Snyder hasn't made a decision on the letter yet, according to spokesman Ari Adler.
"When it is made it will be based on sound science and what is best for the future of the Great Lakes and the many people they serve," he said.