Monday, Oct. 30, 2017
LANSING, Mich. – Gov. Rick Snyder today issued an Executive Order moving the Office of the Great Lakes from the Department of Environmental Quality to the Department of Natural Resources.
“The Great Lakes are one of Michigan’s most prized natural resources,” Snyder said. “Proper protection and management of the lakes is critical to our future. Moving the Office of the Great Lakes to the DNR will strengthen opportunities for improved management of the lakes by better aligning programs and responsibilities within state government.”
Executive Order 2017-9 will take effect Dec. 28, and will move all functions of the Office of the Great Lakes into the DNR. Jon Allan will remain as director of the Office of the Great Lakes and a member of the governor’s cabinet. Angela Ayers, currently special advisor on the environment for the governor, will join the Office as deputy director.
The Office of the Great Lakes will retain all current programs and responsibilities, including its central role in advising the governor and other state departments on policy and actions regarding the Great Lakes. The transfer broadens the opportunities for strategic investments and partnerships to benefit the lakes. The DEQ will continue to provide critical regulatory oversight for protecting Michigan’s water resources. The Office of the Great Lakes will continue to coordinate with the DEQ on policies, programs, and procedures regarding the lakes. The transfer will align programs within the Office of the Great Lakes and the DNR and afford the Office the opportunity to work more closely with the DNR on key natural resources management policies.
“This move will ensure the long-term ability of the Office of the Great Lakes to better protect, restore and sustain the Great Lakes watershed into the future,” said Snyder.