Here are a few quick midweek updates on Protect Our Great Outdoors legislation:
MPR’s Fantasy Legislature Commissioner, Bob Collins, has some highlights from Monday’s Global Warming Mitigation Act hearing in the House Energy Committee, which got rather, pardon the expression, heated over the issue of limiting power companies to their current level of global warming pollution. The Committee will be resuming debate today at 2:15 and a vote is expected. And, because I am sure you’ve been wondering, you’ll note while on their website that my legislative team is still holding in the middle of the pack.
Christopher at Energista has a post on one of the more complex components of the energy efficiency bill being debated by the legislature. The bill is scheduled for a hearing in the Senate Environment Finance committee tomorrow.
Clean Water Legacy
Legacy is expected to appear in various budget division bills, but at levels still unknown. The Senate Ag division should be the first one out with the potential for some Legacy funding. The bulk of the funding should be in the Senate Environment finance division bill though, which I don’t believe will be discussed until next week. Currently, I am hearing rumors of funding being at less than half of the $100 million a year that is needed to protect and restore our lakes, rivers and streams.
The House funding targets are expected to be released any old day now, with no word yet reaching me on how the environment is coming in.
Protect Our Great Outdoors Amendment
Discussions on long-term funding dedicated for the environment (and/or others) have slowed some as the money conversations have turned to the budget for the next two years. Nonetheless, some things are happening. Word on the street is that House Majority Leader Tony Sertich will be introducing a companion bill to Senate Majority Leader Pogemiller’s SF6. It looks like these bills are the ones that will be the focus of conversations going forward, but I am told Senator Pogemiller is open to adjusting the environmental funding portion to better reflect MEP member groups’ desires.