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Huebsch revives proposal to split the DNR into two agencies

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Former state Assembly Speaker Mike Huebsch is reviving a proposal to split the Department of Natural Resources into two separate agencies.

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The Republican from West Salem says the DNR is too big and unwieldy.

He wants to create a new agency to deal with pollution and environmental permits, while the DNR would deal only with hunting, fishing and conservation matters.

Republicans have tried several times in the past to split up the DNR, but have not succeeded.

Huebsch wants his proposal to be attached to a bill that lets the DNR secretary be appointed by the Natural Resources Board instead of the governor.

An Assembly committee is scheduled to vote on that measure today.

Huebsch said that under his bill, the governor would still appoint the leader of his proposed new environmental agency.

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