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DNR to hold hearing on phosphorous variance determination

MADISON, Wis. (AP) — Gov. Scott Walker’s administration has determined that complying with Wisconsin’s phosphorus limits would cause substantial social and economic impacts.

Wastewater plants, paper mills and food processers contend they’ll have to spend millions of dollars on upgrades to meet the limits, driving up rates.

They need an impact determination to trigger a law that Walker signed last year. The provision allows them 20 years to come into compliance with the limits by meeting progressively tougher limits. They also would have to choose whether to pay their county to reduce phosphorus, invest in their own reduction project or help fund someone else’s reduction process in the same watershed.

The impact determination is preliminary. The Natural Resources and Administration departments have set a public hearing on the determination for May 12 in Wausau.

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