Environmental issues dominate town hall led by Rep. Glenn Grothman

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BERLIN, Wis. (WBAY) - Members of Congress are on break right now, and many of them are home holding town hall-style meetings with constituents.

Glenn Grothman town hall meeting
Rep. Glenn Grothman leads a town hall meeting in Berlin on April 11, 2017 (WBAY photo)

That includes Rep. Glenn Grothman (R-Glenbeulah), who held meetings in Redgranite and Berlin on Tuesday.

Across the country we've seen some town halls hosted by Republican lawmakers turn into shouting matches, especially over the future of the Affordable Care Act. That was not the case in Berlin, where a majority of the questions dealt with the environment.

The first question specifically asked about the management of the Great Lakes region.

"So given the proposed cuts to EPA, what is your position on the Great Lakes Restoration project funding, and the proposed cuts to that?" asked a women in the audience.

Grothman responded saying, "I don't blame the Appropriations Committee if they don't bring everything back up to the level it was before Donald Trump proposed these cuts, because we are broke out of our mind, but I'm confident that the program will not be gotten rid of, and I think I'm confident most of it will survive the budget process."

While others posed questions about health care, student loan debt, and abortion, the future of the Environmental Protection Agency continued to come up.

Another audience members said, "The economic incentive is against protecting the environment. We need the government and the EPA to protect our precious environment."

Grothman replied, "None of the factory owners that I talk to or managers I talk to or the farmers I talk to are unaware of the fact we want clean air or clean water, but some of the regulators from both the EPA and DNR act like money grows on trees."

This town hall forum was one of several held here in the district by Grothman over the past couple of days. While not everyone who shows up is in agreement, he does believe the meeting serves a purpose.

"Most people who show up at these meetings do want more government expenditures. We're borrowing 14 percent of our budget already, so I obviously have some difficult decisions to make," said Grothman after the meeting.

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