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The Public Trust is in Jeopardy Again, and We Cannot Give Up. Contact your State Legislators: Protect your Right to Access Lake Michigan's Shoreline.

by Natalie Johnson, Executive Director, Save the Dunes

Right now, we need your help taking the next step to defend Hoosier's rights to recreate along Lake Michigan.

It has happened again - more state legislation being introduced that would impact the public trust. You may have acted on this before, calling your representative as well as members of different committees assigned to public trust bills. However, this is a new session with new bills. If we are going to stand up to defend our right to use the Lake Michigan shoreline freely, we must reach out regarding newly presented bills and inform our State's leadership what we want for our region.

Public Trust Impacts in the Indiana Senate

On Monday, January 27, the Indiana Senate Natural Resources Committee will hear a bill that would codify the February 2018 Indiana Supreme Court ruling that firmly put the state’s Lake Michigan shorelands into public, not private, ownership. It is a bill that we ask you to join us in supporting.

SB 325, co-authored by Senator Karen Tallian, enforces the right for the public to use the Lake Michigan shore for recreational activities. It also reinforces the Indiana Supreme Court's definition of the "Lake Michigan shore" as the land along the edge of Lake Michigan between the water's edge and the ordinary high-water mark. Save the Dunes will be testifying in support of SB 325. We urge you to vocalize your support for SB 325 and defend your right to access the shore of Lake Michigan.  

Indiana Senate Action:

Call or email members of the Indiana Senate Natural Resources Committee

Senate Committee Members:

Chair: Senator Susan Glick
Ranking Member: Senator Jean Leising
Senator Brian Buchanan (Majority Member)
Senator Justin Busch (Majority Member)
Senator Blake Doriot (Majority Member)

Senator Chip Perfect (Majority Member)
Senator James Tomes (Majority Member)
Senator Timothy Lanane (Ranking Minority Member)
Senator Greg Taylor (Minority Member)

 

 

Consider drawing on the text above for your email. Also, be sure to add your personal touch - especially why this issue is important to you. Copy and paste the following emails:

Senator.Glick@iga.in.gov; Senator.Leising@iga.in.gov; Senator.Buchanan@iga.in.gov; Senator.Busch@iga.in.gov; Senator.Doriot@iga.in.gov; Senator.Perfect@iga.in.gov; Senator.Tomes@iga.in.gov; s25@in.gov; s33@iga.in.gov

Public Trust Impacts in the Indiana House 

On Monday, January 13, the Indiana House Judiciary Committee heard a bill that could negatively impact the Indiana Supreme Court ruling in favor of the Public Trust. Save the Dunes was on site to testify. The bill remains in committee. 

HB 1031, authored by Representative Doug Miller (Elkhart), defines the Lake Michigan shore in a way that would give away the shore to private ownership. Save the Dunes does not support HB 1031 and feels strongly that it could undo the public's right to the shore. Again, we urge you to vocalize your opposition to HB 1031. 

Indiana House Action:

Call or email members of the Indiana House Judiciary Committee

House Committee Members:

Chair: Representative Jerry Torr
Ranking Member: Representative John Young
Representative Woody Burton (Majority Member)
Representative Anthony Cook (Majority Member)
Representative Karen Engleman (Majority Member)
Representative Daniel Leonard (Majority Member)

Representative Chris May (Majority Member)
Representative Wendy McNamara (Majority Member)
Representative Gregory Steuerwald (Majority Member)

Representative Patrick Bauer (Ranking Minority Member)
Representative Edward DeLaney (Minority Member)
Representative Ryan Dvorak (Minority Member)
Representative Ryan Hatfield (Minority Member)

Consider drawing on the text above for your email. Also, be sure to add your personal touch - especially why this issue is important to you. Copy and paste the following emails: h39@iga.in.gov; h47@iga.in.gov; h58@iga.in.gov; h32@iga.in.gov; h70@iga.in.gov; h50@iga.in.gov; h65@iga.in.gov; h76@iga.in.gov; h40@iga.in.gov; h86@iga.in.gov; h8@iga.in.gov; h77@iga.in.gov; h6@iga.in.gov

Save the Dunes wishes to thank the Conservation Law Center of Bloomington, IN for their support and representation in the fight to protect the public trust. Please be sure to check them out online at conservationlawcenter.org.

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