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Supreme Court: Prehn Can Remain on Natural Resources Board
Wisconsin Ag Connection - 06/30/2022

Justices on the Wisconsin Supreme Court ruled that the former chairman of the Natural Resources Board can remain on the panel, despite his six-year term being expired and a replacement already appointed by Gov. Tony Evers. On Wednesday, the high court upheld a Dane County judge's September 2021 ruling that said Attorney General Josh Kaul did not have the authority to force Dr. Fred Prehn from his post on the board.

Prehn was appointed to the board in 2015 by then-Governor Scott Walker. His term ended on May 1, 2021, but has refused to relinquish his duties because Republican lawmakers have yet to hold a hearing on his replacement. The court agreed with that logic by a 4-3 decision, citing a similar case that was ruled on in 1964 involving gubernatorial appointments that failed to get legislative confirmation.

In April of last year, Evers appointed Sandra Dee Naas and Sharon Adams to fill vacancies created by the expiring terms of Prehn and Julie Anderson. Anderson has already stepped down.

Prehn's presence on the board means the group is made up of a 4-3 conservative majority.

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