Minnesota Legislature Sides with Polluters Against Clean Air and Water

March 31, 2017

Media Contact:
Margaret Levin – Margaret.levin@sierraclub.org, 612-659-9124

Saint Paul, MINN. (March 31, 2017) – This week, the Minnesota House and Senate passed their Environment and Natural Resources Omnibus bills (HF888/SF723). In addition to irresponsible budget cuts to state agencies charged with safeguarding Minnesotan’s air, land and water, the bills include more than 90 pages of policy provisions, many of which are controversial polluter-sponsored initiatives that weaken existing environmental laws and roll back protections.

Margaret Levin, State Director of the Sierra Club North Star Chapter issued the following statement in response:

“Minnesota is the Land of 10,000 Lakes, and voters expect their legislators to prioritize the protection of clean water, clean air and the health of families and children when they come to St. Paul. Today, the Minnesota House and Senate both failed to meet this standard. The House and Senate Environment Omnibus bills include sweetheart provisions for polluting industries, undermine Minnesota’s longstanding framework for environmental protection, and fail to adequately fund the protections that keep our air and water safe.

In 2008, Minnesotans voted to raise their own taxes in order to ensure that our most precious natural resources are properly protected. Minnesotans view the protection of air and water as core functions of their state government. Clearly, Minnesota legislators need to get in sync with their constituents on these critical issues.”

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Governor Dayton Stands Up for Rural Clean Energy Customers

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

March 20, 2017

Media Contact:
Margaret Levin – Margaret.levin@sierraclub.org, 612-659-9124

Saint Paul, MINN. (March 20, 2017) – Today, Minnesota Governor Mark Dayton announced his veto of House File 234, a bill that would remove protection by the Public Utilities Commission for renewable energy customers served by rural electric cooperatives and municipal utilities.

Margaret Levin, State Director of the Sierra Club North Star Chapter issued the following statement in response:

“Minnesota wind and solar customers deserve the same level of protection regardless of where they live and which utility happens to serve their community. Governor Dayton’s decision to veto this legislation ensures that clean energy customers served by rural electric coops and municipal utilities will continue to have at least some recourse when faced with onerous and burdensome fees and surcharges by their electric utility.

The Governor’s decision also sends a clear signal that Minnesotans value the critical role that the Public Utilities Commission plays in protecting ratepayers and consumers from utility decisions that are not in the public interest. We applaud the Governor’s decision today, and look forward to continuing our work to ensure that rural Minnesotans have access to clean and affordable renewable energy.”

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