A friend sends Bluestem this news:
The Minnesota Environmental Partnership and others have decided to have an event this Thursday at 10:30 a.m. at the Governor’s residence, 1006 Summit Avenue, St. Paul, to ask Governor Mark Dayton to veto the ag and environment omnibus bill (HF 846).
What's the problem with the legislation?
From the Facebook page for the Keep Minnesota Clean Event at the Governor’s Mansion:
Join together to ask Governor Dayton to veto the dirty environment bill and ask the legislature to fix it to keep MN clean. #KeepMNClean
What the bill does:
- Eliminates the MN Pollution Control Agency's Citizens' Board
- Raids dedicated environmental funds
- Allows deceptive labeling for pollinator-friendly plants
- Exempts sulfide mining waste from solid waste rules
- Grants polluters amnesty from enforcement and penalties
We'll gather at 10:30AM
Kids encouraged!! This is an event with a positive message.
Minnesota Public Radio's Elizabeth Dunbar reported in Environmentalists want another veto from Dayton:
Environmentalists want Dayton to reject a spending bill for agriculture and the environment — even though it includes language on buffers to protect the state's waterways. Buffers have been one of Dayton's top priorities this session.
The list of objections from environmental groups is long, and it includes complaints about both policy and spending — including a provision that uses money raised by Minnesota's Legacy Amendment to pay for environmental measures.
One of the biggest objections is to a provision that would eliminate the citizens' board that oversees some decisions at the Minnesota Pollution Control Agency. The language stems from a controversial decision the board made last year over a proposed dairy operation.
Environmental groups also object to money being transferred out of a fund designed to clean up old landfills in the future and to new policies they say would delay water quality rules, hurt bees and go easy on polluters.
"It's really an atrocious environmental bill, especially in a year when we have a lot of money," said Steve Morse, executive director of the Minnesota Environmental Partnership, which represents a coalition of groups. "It makes dramatic cuts to the environment and natural resources and has a lot of really bad policy."
The Republican-led Minnesota House debated and passed the bill on an 83-50 vote, with most Democrats voting against it. The abolition of the MPCA Citizens Board was one of several reasons some DFLers said they opposed it. They argued the board provides an additional check on a regulatory agency.
"Eliminating this board is a radical step," said Rep. Frank Hornstein, DFL-Minneapolis. "It shouldn't be in this bill." . . .
Read the entire article at MPR.
For more background about the issues with the bill, check out our posts Minnesota Environmental Partnership: Vote no on HF846 conference committee report and Call Governor & Legislators NOW: say no to Ag & Environment Conference Committee report .
Image: logo from Keep Minnesota Clean.
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