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Great Lakes Regional Collaboration

In May 2004, President Bush signed a Presidential Executive Order recognizing the Great Lakes as a national treasure, calling for the creation of a "Regional Collaboration of National Significance" and a cabinet–level interagency task force.

The Great Lakes Regional Collaboration convened on December 3, 2004 with participation from a federal task force, the Great Lakes states, local communities, tribes, regional bodies and other interests in the Great Lakes region. Since then eight Issue Area Strategy teams convened and developed a comprehensive strategy for the protection and restoration of the Great Lakes.

Regional Collaboration strategy to restore and protect the Great Lakes

On Monday December 12, 2005 the eight Great Lakes states, along with the Great Lakes mayors, tribes, congressional delegation and federal agencies announced agreement on the Great Lakes restoration strategy which was developed through the efforts of 1500 volunteers between December 2004 and 2005.

At the ceremony in Chicago, EPA administrator Johnson also announced that $25 million would be invested into a sediment remediation project in Ohio and USDA would initiate a large nutrient/sediment project on the Maumee River. Additionally, Johnson indicated that the administration would seek to fund additional work on the temporary carp barrier in Illinois as well as provide funding to start a new outreach center for water conservation in Chicago. Administrator Johnson also committed that the federal agencies would support an initiative to protect or restore 200,000 acres of Great Lakes basin wetlands in the next federal budget.

Although all of these announcements were welcome, Governor Taft of Ohio and Governor Doyle, as co–chairs of the Council of Great Lakes Governors and Mayor Daley of Chicago on behalf of the Great Lakes Conference of Mayors, signed and sent a letter to the President identifying about $300 million dollars of other short term restoration needs for the fiscal year 2007 federal budget and requested a meeting with President Bush to urge his support for these measures.

Development of Wisconsin´s Great Lakes Strategy

In parallel to the Great Lakes Regional Collaboration, the DNR´s Office of the Great Lakes with the help of countless individuals and organizations developed a Wisconsin specific strategy that represents the needs and desires of the state to protect and enhance the Great Lakes for future generations.

Last revised: Thursday April 14 2016