February 05, 2009

A New Day at IDNR

It was great to see Illinois Governor Pat Quinn take early and decisive action today to begin to rebuild the Illinois Department of Natural Resources by appointing an outstanding new Director, Marc Miller. Everyone who loves the Illinois outdoors can take heart today that Gov. Quinn recognizes the critical importance of the work done by DNR, and will work to restore the former strength of the Department.

Governor Quinn's appointment of Marc Miller to head the Illinois Department of Natural Resources is very strong first step to rebuilding Illinois' ability to protect Illinois' wildlife, water, and special places, and to offer high quality outdoor recreation experiences to Illinois residents and visitors. The IDNR has suffered greatly from budget cuts, layoffs, loss of talented career staff, political hiring and firing, and low staff morale.

Marc Miller is just the man for the big job of restoring the IDNR's integrity and ability to protect Illinois' great outdoors. Miller is a natural resource professional, an avid Illinois outdoorsman, and he has dedicated his career to protecting Illinois' rivers, lakes, streams, and other special places for current and future generations. He can unite the many constituents of the IDNR - hunters, hikers, anglers, birdwatchers and all of us who hope to pass on Illinois' natural heritage to future generations - to advocate for for adequate funding for the Department in these very troubled financial times.

By making the IDNR Director his first Agency appointment, in his first week as Governor, Quinn is sending a powerful signal that the mission of the DNR to protect our natural resources is critical to our well-being and our economy. Especially in the state's current fiscal crisis, we know that rebuilding the IDNR will take time, but today Pat Quinn made clear it is a priority. Sierra Club is ready to work with Gov. Quinn, Director Miller, and all of IDNR's diverse constituencies to restore the IDNR's capacity to protect Illinois' special places, safeguard our water supplies, and provide safe, quality outdoor recreation opportunities.


Anonymous said...

I have to agree with Bill Baar. It's time for Sierra Club to issue a public apology to the conservation community for endorsing Blagojevich for a second term.

Your organization shares responsibility for the mess at DNR. You provided cover for the former Governor, while his administration was actively dismantling this agency. It's time to come clean.

Jarvis said...

Information has been circulated that the Ill. Sierra Club has endorsed the Chicagos'Olympic Bid
Venues planned in Chicago's Lake front parks will seriously dammage Native Habitat
The Bill Jarvis Migratory Bird Sanctuary (3550 N.) is maintained by volunteer Stewards and over the past 10 years 300 persons working 2 Sats a month. The Habitat restoraton is funded by community donations, grants etc. The work has enhanced public education and viewing access as well as increased Bird and Wildlife Habitiat.
An Olympic Tennis Venue with 17000 seat Stadium an 15 practice Courts will be up aganst this invaluable site. No amount of Spin can change the fact that this fragile habitat can not be sustained and improved with such construction and human invasion.
Charlotte Newfeld
Steward and Project Director
Lake View Citizens Council
Bill Jarvis Migratory Bird Sanctuary cnewfeld@sbcglobal.netcowli