A delay was caused by the late submission of a series of negotiating requests from Gov. Mark Dayton, who sought the inclusion of several provisions that had not yet been funded in the bill.
The Legislative-Citizen Commission on Minnesota Resources (LCCMR) agreed on Wednesday to recommend $28.9 million worth of environmental projects to the state Legislature. The projects range from addressing the decline of bee colonies in the state to investigating the damage to Minnesota loons caused by the 2010 BP oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico.
In all, the LCCMR received 192 proposals that totaled approximately $111.5 million. The LCCMR, which will have a total of $29.6 million at its disposal from the Environment and Natural Resources Trust Fund, is scheduled to make its funding recommendations to the 2014 Legislature at its meetings next Tuesday and Wednesday.
Minnesota used to be a wheat state. But the state agricultural scene has drifted dramatically in favor of soybean and corn crops, which these days yield a much more productive and profitable harvest for the state’s cropland.
With most major finance bills clearing the House and Senate floors, attention will now turn towards conference committees this week. Conferees on several bills have already been appointed by legislative leaders.
Faced with a set of budget targets that concentrate most new spending on the education sector, some House committee chairs are seeking to augment their own budgets with added marginal revenues from fee hikes.
The Minnesota House is getting pushback as it seeks to reset the calendar for appropriating Legacy dollars for hunting and fishing habitat.
If DFL majorities in the Minnesota House and Senate are to act on the brewing issue of frac sand extraction, they will first have to overcome internal differences that yawn as large as an open-pit mine.
Growing pressures on Minnesota’s water supply are bound to be a key issue for environmental committees at the Minnesota Legislature this session.
The first partisan front in the newly constituted Minnesota House of Representatives was established only minutes after that body opened the 2013 session. After the chamber cycled through a handful of procedural votes, Rep. Rod Hamilton, R-Mountain Lake, rose to challenge the DFL majority’s decision to create the House Environment, Natural Resources and Agriculture Finance Division.
With DFLers back in control of the House and Senate, many familiar faces will be wielding key gavels when the Legislature convenes on January 8.
Close on the heels of Tuesday’s election, members of the new DFL House and Senate majorities gathered behind closed doors on Thursday to elect their leaders. As expected, the minority leaders who helped steer Democrats back into control — Rep. Paul Thissen, DFL-Minneapolis, and Sen. Tom Bakk, DFL-Cook — were elevated to House speaker and Senate majority leader.
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