Wisconsin Senate approves softer water development bill

MADISON — The state Senate has approved a scaled-down version of a bill that would relax regulations on construction on water bodies.

The Assembly passed Republican-authored legislation last week that would shrink the types of water bodies that could be designated as areas of special natural resource interest, or ASNRIs, where developers must meet a long list of standards. The bill also would create a general permit allowing shoreline property owners to dredge 25 cubic yards of materials from inland lakes and 100 cubic yards from outlying waters annually.

Senate Republicans amended the measure during a floor session Tuesday to remove the dredging language but further restrict the type of water bodies that qualify as ASNRIs. It now must return to the Assembly for approval.