Saint Paul, Minn. (May 23, 2015) — Earlier today, Governor Dayton used his veto pen on two major budget bills: the Agriculture and Environment Budget Bill, which contained a scaled back version of his buffer initiative and other provisions that would roll back Minnesota’s environmental protections; and the Jobs and Energy Budget Bill, which contained provisions that would undermine incentives for renewable energy uses.
Below is a statement from the Minnesota Environmental Partnership
We thank Governor Dayton for his vetos today of the 2015 Omnibus Agriculture & Environment Budget Bill and Jobs and Energy Budget Bill. His decisions to veto these bills demonstrates his unflagging determination to protect Minnesota’s lakes, rivers, streams, and the rest of our Great Outdoors
The Ag and Environment bill vetoed today rolled back many protections for Minnesota’s clean water and our long-standing tradition of citizen involvement and oversight of our pollution control agency. The Legislature missed opportunities for charting a new course to protect and restore our most polluted waterways. The Minnesota Environmental Partnership and our coalition of 70+ partners are relieved and grateful that it will not become law. In his veto letter, the Governor insists the Legislature return and address core elements of this bill including funding to address the avian flu crisis, Minnesota’s parks and trails systems, as well as the state Pollution Controll Agency, Department of Natural Resources, Board of Water and Soil Resources, and the Department of Agriculture. We call on the legislature to act quickly and pass a clean bill during the coming Special Session.
The Governor also vetoed the Jobs and Energy Budget Bill, which was passed moments before the close of the session, citing, among other reasons, a provision that would roll back Minnesota’s net metering law. Even though Minnesota’s clean energy economy is growing at record pace, the Legislature took a step back on solar energy, voting to limit access to clean energy for customers of rural coops and municipal utilities. That move will only hurt efforts to grow clean energy and was an unneeded change.
As the Legislature reconvenes to address these bills, as well as the unpassed Legacy bill, and vetoed Education bill, we urge them to listen to the thousands of Minnesotans who are speaking up for Minnesota’s Great Outdoors and pass clean bills
Minnesota Environmental Partnership is a statewide coalition of more than 70 environmental and conservation organizations working together for clean water, clean energy and protection of our Great Outdoors. The Minnesota Environmental Partnership engages state leaders, unites environmental efforts and helps citizens take action for the Minnesota they love.