Legislative Updates

FMR is proud to be the voice for the Mississippi River at the Minnesota State Capitol. Here's what we're working on currently.

For an overview of our goals for this legislative session and in-depth articles on each, see the "Legislative Priorities" panel. As each important river-related bill or program progresses, we'll post updates below. Please take a moment to bookmark us as your go-to source for legislative news impacting the Mississippi River.

Join us! Sign up to be a River Guardian to receive legislative email action alerts and our e-newsletter, Mississippi Messages.

By Trevor Russell
April 17, 2018

As we noted in the State of the River Report, chloride or salt pollution is a growing problem for Minnesota's waters. This session, FMR and our allies have been advancing a bill in the Minnesota Legislature to reduce it.

We're happy to report that the bill has garnered bipartisan support. However, it will most likely be wrapped into the House and Senate omnibus bills, making its fate murky at best. >>

April 17, 2018

On Monday, April 26, the Minnesota House of Representatives voted 69-56 to pass a bill to block the state’s Groundwater Protection Rule from going into effect without legislative approval.

Gov. Mark Dayton has promised a veto, but the blocking language exists in several other bills, meaning it may yet advance to the governor's desk as part of other legislation. >>

April 17, 2018

FMR and our allies just sent this letter to the Minnesota House opposing proposed legislation to block our state’s Groundwater Protection Rule. >>

April 10, 2018

The legislature is rolling up its sleeves and rolling back bedrock protections for water quality. Here's our top-10 list of bad water bills (so far) this session. >>

April 9, 2018

What do you do when administrative law judges strike down your Legislative provision as a violation of the Clean Water Act? Revive it, of course — and expand it. Welcome to the bad bill that just won't die. >>

April 6, 2018

Our Legislature is considering eliminating the Minnesota Pollution Control Agency's ability to increase permit fees, potentially pushing the costs of monitoring and regulating water pollution onto taxpayers. >>

April 6, 2018

The Minnesota House and Senate are quickly advancing bills to eliminate water quality standards that protect wild rice – Minnesota’s state grain. >>

April 3, 2018

As reported by Josephine Marcotty in the Star Tribune, the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources' request to stay a groundbreaking court order restricting heavy water use around White Bear Lake has been roundly rejected. 

The judge, Ramsey County Judge Margaret Marrinan, harshly criticized the agency for what she called a “stunning” history of failing to comply with state laws designed to protect the environment.

Now, however, the Minnesota Legislature is considering a bill to essentially override the judge's ruling. >>

March 30, 2018

It wouldn’t be a legislative session without a bill from our friends at the Minnesota Chamber of Commerce to roll back basic environmental protections. Here's the worst of this year's edition. >>

March 30, 2018

Every so often, a bill starts moving at the Capitol that defies rational explanation. One such bill this year aims to give $2 million in state taxpayer funds to regulated parties to allow them to provide “oversight” of their own state regulators. Welcome to the MESERB bill. Fox…meet hen house. >>

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