A state lawmaker says he’s worried about the “behemoth” size of the Department of Natural Resources.

State Representative Mike Huebsch (R-West Salem) is sponsoring a bill that would split up the agency, creating two new departments. The Department of Natural Resources would be charged with regulating hunting, trapping, and other outdoor activities. The Department of Environmental Quality would be charged with controlling policies on air and water quality, along with zoning issues.

Huebsch says the split would help to narrow the scope of the DNR, which he believes has grown too large to effectively manage the many areas it currently has to regulate.

The proposal comes as the Assembly gets set to attempt a veto override Tuesday on legislation that allows the Natural Resources Board to appoint the DNR Secretary. Supporters say the measure is needed to keep politics from influencing outdoors policies. Huebsch’s bill would include that provision, while allowing the Governor to appoint the Secretary of the new Department of Environmental Quality.

AUDIO: Andrew Beckett reports (1:16)


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