Radioactive Materials - History of the Agreement State Program

The US Nuclear Regulatory Commission and the Governor signed an agreement transferring regulatory authority over byproduct, source and special nuclear materials to the State of Wisconsin.

What is an agreement state?

An agreement state is a state that enters into an agreement with the Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) to assume regulatory authority over certain radioactive materials under federal jurisdiction.  The state becomes responsible for licensing and inspecting radioactive materials formerly regulated by the NRC.  The state receives the license fee revenue to support the program, and sets its own fees.  NRC staff periodically evaluate the state regulatory program.

When was this federal program initiated?

The agreement state program was established by Congress in 1959.  The first agreement state was Kentucky in 1962.

How many licensed users of radioactive materials are in Wisconsin?

There are about 270 licensed users of radioactive materials in Wisconsin.  

Are nuclear power plants to be regulated by an agreement state?

No.  Nuclear power plants, high level radioactive waste and federal facilities remain under the regulatory authority of the federal government.

What are the specific benefits of becoming an agreement state?

Agreement state status:

  •   Reduces licensing fees from past levels.
  •   Minimizes future fees increases.
  •   Brings regulator closer to customers.
  •   Establishes uniform regulation of radioactive materials by a comprehensive state program.
How does becoming an agreement state affect current users of regulated radioactive materials?

An agreement state program produces minimal change for most material users.  Material licensing, inspection at the same frequency, and enforcement continue.  The primary difference is that material users are regulated by the State of Wisconsin, rather than the NRC.

Where can I get more information?

For more information on agreement state status call:

Cheryl Rogers
Radioactive Materials Program Supervisor


Priscilla Sarow
Radioactive Materials Program Associate


Emily Eggers
Nuclear Engineer


Lauren Ernest
Nuclear Engineer


Krista Kuhlman
Nuclear Engineer  


Mark Paulson
Nuclear Engineer


Megan Shober
Nuclear Engineer


Chris Timmerman
Nuclear Engineer


Andrew K Turner
Nuclear Engineer


Kyle Walton
Nuclear Engineer

Last Revised: November 11, 2014