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*** I heard the following efforst do not inculde lake St. Clair as it is not considered one of the great lakes. We need to contact our local state reps and state senators, to extend water protection act to include st clair, and to encourage everyone to vote on this set of bills.***

Governor Granholm Applauds Environmental Groups for Renewing Call to Legislature for Water Legacy Act

LANSING - Governor Jennifer M. Granholm today applauded a coalition of environmental groups for renewing the call on the Michigan Legislature to pass a comprehensive water law that would protect and preserve the Great Lakes.

A coalition of environmental groups, led by the Michigan League of Conservation Voters (MLCV), today issued a challenge to Michigan lawmakers to "Pledge to Protect Michigan Waters" by working to pass regulations on major water withdrawals like those proposed in the Water Legacy Act, legislation introduced in both the House and Senate and backed by Governor Granholm, which would regulate large-scale water withdrawals and diversions on the Great Lakes.

"I applaud the environmental community in Michigan for renewing the call for the Legislature to pass these important bills," Granholm said. "As we approach the Fourth of July holiday, nearly every Michiganian thinks of going to the beach, boating, or fishing on the Great Lakes. The time is now to raise the public awareness about the need to protect the Great Lakes ecosystem from large-scale water diversions and withdrawals."

Granholm first called on the Legislature to pass comprehensive water protection laws in January, and the cornerstone pieces of her water protection agenda were introduced earlier this year by State Senator Liz Brater (D-Ann Arbor) and State Representative Chris Kolb (D-Ann Arbor).

"I join Michigan's major environmental and conservation groups in calling for the Legislature to protect Michigan's water and take up the Water Legacy Act soon," Granholm said. "In 1985, Michigan signed a compact with other Great Lakes states and Canada to protect the Lakes, and we remain the only state that has not come forth with water protection laws. We must make good on this promise that has gone unfulfilled for nearly 20 years."

Granholm called on the Legislature to give the Brater and Kolb bills a committee hearing to initiate discussion on the issue.

"The very least we can do is start a discussion on the need and obligation we have in Michigan to protect the Great Lakes," Granholm said. "If our state does not act soon to protect the Great Lakes, my concern is the federal government will step in and the citizens of Michigan will lose control over what happens to our water."
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