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SF 639

1st Engrossment - 92nd Legislature (2021 - 2022) Posted on 03/04/2021 01:57pm

KEY: stricken = removed, old language.
underscored = added, new language.

Current Version - 1st Engrossment

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A bill for an act
relating to environment; clarifying that certain agency interpretive statements may
not be treated as if they are properly adopted rules; clarifying that certain fee
increases require legislative approval; modifying effluent limitation requirements;
modifying requirements for Pollution Control Agency permitting efficiency reports;
modifying procedure for filing petition seeking environmental assessment
worksheet; requiring analysis of Wisconsin's Green Tier Program; requiring
Pollution Control Agency to seek approval of certain modifications to state
implementation plan; amending Minnesota Statutes 2020, sections 84.027, by
adding a subdivision; 115.03, subdivision 1; 115.455; 115.77, subdivision 1;
115.84, subdivisions 2, 3; 116.03, subdivision 2b; 116.07, subdivision 4d, by
adding a subdivision; 116D.04, subdivision 2a.

BE IT ENACTED BY THE LEGISLATURE OF THE STATE OF MINNESOTA:

Section 1.

Minnesota Statutes 2020, section 84.027, is amended by adding a subdivision
to read:


new text begin Subd. 14c. new text end

new text begin Unadopted rules. new text end

new text begin (a) The commissioner of natural resources must not enforce
or attempt to enforce an unadopted rule. For purposes of this subdivision, "unadopted rule"
means a guideline, bulletin, criterion, manual standard, interpretive statement, policy plan,
or similar pronouncement if the guideline, bulletin, criterion, manual standard, interpretive
statement, policy plan, or similar pronouncement has not been adopted according to the
rulemaking process provided under chapter 14. If an unadopted rule is challenged under
section 14.381, the commissioner must cease enforcement of the unadopted rule and
overcome a presumption that the unadopted rule must be adopted according to the rulemaking
process provided under chapter 14.
new text end

new text begin (b) Before the commissioner incorporates by reference an internal guideline, bulletin,
criterion, manual standard, interpretive statement, policy plan, or similar pronouncement
into a standard, permit, or contract, the commissioner must follow the rulemaking process
provided under chapter 14 to adopt, amend, revise, or incorporate any such guideline,
bulletin, criterion, manual standard, interpretive statement, policy plan, or similar
pronouncement.
new text end

Sec. 2.

Minnesota Statutes 2020, section 115.03, subdivision 1, is amended to read:


Subdivision 1.

Generally.

new text begin(a) new text endThe agency is hereby given and charged with the following
powers and duties:

deleted text begin (a)deleted text endnew text begin (1)new text end to administer and enforce all laws relating to the pollution of any of the waters
of the state;

deleted text begin (b)deleted text endnew text begin (2)new text end to investigate the extent, character, and effect of the pollution of the waters of
this state and to gather data and information necessary or desirable in the administration or
enforcement of pollution laws, and to make such classification of the waters of the state as
it may deem advisable;

deleted text begin (c)deleted text endnew text begin (3)new text end to establish and alter such reasonable pollution standards for any waters of the
state in relation to the public use to which they are or may be put as it shall deem necessary
for the purposes of this chapter and, with respect to the pollution of waters of the state,
chapter 116;

deleted text begin (d)deleted text endnew text begin (4)new text end to encourage waste treatment, including advanced waste treatment, instead of
stream low-flow augmentation for dilution purposes to control and prevent pollution;

deleted text begin (e)deleted text endnew text begin (5)new text end to adopt, issue, reissue, modify, deny, or revoke, enter into or enforce reasonable
orders, permits, variances, standards, rules, schedules of compliance, and stipulation
agreements, under such conditions as it may prescribe, in order to prevent, control or abate
water pollution, or for the installation or operation of disposal systems or parts thereof, or
for other equipment and facilities:

deleted text begin (1)deleted text endnew text begin (i)new text end requiring the discontinuance of the discharge of sewage, industrial waste or other
wastes into any waters of the state resulting in pollution in excess of the applicable pollution
standard established under this chapter;

deleted text begin (2)deleted text endnew text begin (ii)new text end prohibiting or directing the abatement of any discharge of sewage, industrial
waste, or other wastes, into any waters of the state or the deposit thereof or the discharge
into any municipal disposal system where the same is likely to get into any waters of the
state in violation of this chapter and, with respect to the pollution of waters of the state,
chapter 116, or standards or rules promulgated or permits issued pursuant thereto, and
specifying the schedule of compliance within which such prohibition or abatement must be
accomplished;

deleted text begin (3)deleted text endnew text begin (iii)new text end prohibiting the storage of any liquid or solid substance or other pollutant in a
manner which does not reasonably assure proper retention against entry into any waters of
the state that would be likely to pollute any waters of the state;

deleted text begin (4)deleted text endnew text begin (iv)new text end requiring the construction, installation, maintenance, and operation by any person
of any disposal system or any part thereof, or other equipment and facilities, or the
reconstruction, alteration, or enlargement of its existing disposal system or any part thereof,
or the adoption of other remedial measures to prevent, control or abate any discharge or
deposit of sewage, industrial waste or other wastes by any person;

deleted text begin (5)deleted text endnew text begin (v)new text end establishing, and from time to time revising, standards of performance for new
sources taking into consideration, among other things, classes, types, sizes, and categories
of sources, processes, pollution control technology, cost of achieving such effluent reduction,
and any nonwater quality environmental impact and energy requirements. Said standards
of performance for new sources shall encompass those standards for the control of the
discharge of pollutants which reflect the greatest degree of effluent reduction which the
agency determines to be achievable through application of the best available demonstrated
control technology, processes, operating methods, or other alternatives, including, where
practicable, a standard permitting no discharge of pollutants. New sources shall encompass
buildings, structures, facilities, or installations from which there is or may be the discharge
of pollutants, the construction of which is commenced after the publication by the agency
of proposed rules prescribing a standard of performance which will be applicable to such
source. Notwithstanding any other provision of the law of this state, any point source the
construction of which is commenced after May 20, 1973, and which is so constructed as to
meet all applicable standards of performance for new sources shall, consistent with and
subject to the provisions of section 306(d) of the Amendments of 1972 to the Federal Water
Pollution Control Act, not be subject to any more stringent standard of performance for new
sources during a ten-year period beginning on the date of completion of such construction
or during the period of depreciation or amortization of such facility for the purposes of
section 167 or 169, or both, of the Federal Internal Revenue Code of 1954, whichever period
ends first. Construction shall encompass any placement, assembly, or installation of facilities
or equipment, including contractual obligations to purchase such facilities or equipment, at
the premises where such equipment will be used, including preparation work at such
premises;

deleted text begin (6)deleted text endnew text begin (vi)new text end establishing and revising pretreatment standards to prevent or abate the discharge
of any pollutant into any publicly owned disposal system, which pollutant interferes with,
passes through, or otherwise is incompatible with such disposal system;

deleted text begin (7)deleted text endnew text begin (vii)new text end requiring the owner or operator of any disposal system or any point source to
establish and maintain such records, make such reports, install, use, and maintain such
monitoring equipment or methods, including where appropriate biological monitoring
methods, sample such effluents in accordance with such methods, at such locations, at such
intervals, and in such a manner as the agency shall prescribe, and providing such other
information as the agency may reasonably require;

deleted text begin (8)deleted text endnew text begin (viii)new text end notwithstanding any other provision of this chapter, and with respect to the
pollution of waters of the state, chapter 116, requiring the achievement of more stringent
limitations than otherwise imposed by effluent limitations in order to meet any applicable
water quality standard by establishing new effluent limitations, based upon section 115.01,
subdivision 13
, clause (b), including alternative effluent control strategies for any point
source or group of point sources to insure the integrity of water quality classifications,
whenever the agency determines that discharges of pollutants from such point source or
sources, with the application of effluent limitations required to comply with any standard
of best available technology, would interfere with the attainment or maintenance of the
water quality classification in a specific portion of the waters of the state. Prior to
establishment of any such effluent limitation, the agency shall hold a public hearing to
determine the relationship of the economic and social costs of achieving such limitation or
limitations, including any economic or social dislocation in the affected community or
communities, to the social and economic benefits to be obtained and to determine whether
or not such effluent limitation can be implemented with available technology or other
alternative control strategies. If a person affected by such limitation demonstrates at such
hearing that, whether or not such technology or other alternative control strategies are
available, there is no reasonable relationship between the economic and social costs and
the benefits to be obtained, such limitation shall not become effective and shall be adjusted
as it applies to such person;

deleted text begin (9)deleted text endnew text begin (ix)new text end modifying, in its discretion, any requirement or limitation based upon best
available technology with respect to any point source for which a permit application is filed
after July 1, 1977, upon a showing by the owner or operator of such point source satisfactory
to the agency that such modified requirements will represent the maximum use of technology
within the economic capability of the owner or operator and will result in reasonable further
progress toward the elimination of the discharge of pollutants; and

deleted text begin (10)deleted text endnew text begin (x)new text end requiring that applicants for wastewater discharge permits evaluate in their
applications the potential reuses of the discharged wastewater;

deleted text begin (f)deleted text endnew text begin (6)new text end to require to be submitted and to approve plans and specifications for disposal
systems or point sources, or any part thereof and to inspect the construction thereof for
compliance with the approved plans and specifications thereof;

deleted text begin (g)deleted text endnew text begin (7)new text end to prescribe and alter rules, not inconsistent with law, for the conduct of the
agency and other matters within the scope of the powers granted to and imposed upon it by
this chapter and, with respect to pollution of waters of the state, in chapter 116, provided
that every rule affecting any other department or agency of the state or any person other
than a member or employee of the agency shall be filed with the secretary of state;

deleted text begin (h)deleted text endnew text begin (8)new text end to conduct such investigations, issue such notices, public and otherwise, and hold
such hearings as are necessary or which it may deem advisable for the discharge of its duties
under this chapter and, with respect to the pollution of waters of the state, under chapter
116, including, but not limited to, the issuance of permits, and to authorize any member,
employee, or agent appointed by it to conduct such investigations or, issue such notices and
hold such hearings;

deleted text begin (i)deleted text endnew text begin (9)new text end for the purpose of water pollution control planning by the state and pursuant to
the Federal Water Pollution Control Act, as amended, to establish and revise planning areas,
adopt plans and programs and continuing planning processes, including, but not limited to,
basin plans and areawide waste treatment management plans, and to provide for the
implementation of any such plans by means of, including, but not limited to, standards, plan
elements, procedures for revision, intergovernmental cooperation, residual treatment process
waste controls, and needs inventory and ranking for construction of disposal systems;

deleted text begin (j)deleted text endnew text begin (10)new text end to train water pollution control personneldeleted text begin,deleted text end and charge deleted text beginsuchdeleted text end fees deleted text begintherefor as aredeleted text endnew text begin
for the training as
new text end necessary to cover the agency's costs. new text beginThe fees under this clause are
subject to legislative approval under section 16A.1283.
new text endAll such fees received shall be paid
into the state treasury and credited to the Pollution Control Agency training account;

deleted text begin (k)deleted text endnew text begin (11)new text end to impose as additional conditions in permits to publicly owned disposal systems
appropriate measures to insure compliance by industrial and other users with any pretreatment
standard, including, but not limited to, those related to toxic pollutants, and any system of
user charges ratably as is hereby required under state law or said Federal Water Pollution
Control Act, as amended, or any regulations or guidelines promulgated thereunder;

deleted text begin (l)deleted text endnew text begin (12)new text end to set a period not to exceed five years for the duration of any national pollutant
discharge elimination system permit or not to exceed ten years for any permit issued as a
state disposal system permit only;

deleted text begin (m)deleted text endnew text begin (13)new text end to require each governmental subdivision identified as a permittee for a
wastewater treatment works to evaluate in every odd-numbered year the condition of its
existing system and identify future capital improvements that will be needed to attain or
maintain compliance with a national pollutant discharge elimination system or state disposal
system permit; and

deleted text begin (n)deleted text endnew text begin (14)new text end to train subsurface sewage treatment system personnel, including persons who
design, construct, install, inspect, service, and operate subsurface sewage treatment systems,
and charge fees new text beginfor the training new text endas necessary to pay the agency's costs. new text beginThe fees under this
clause are subject to legislative approval under section 16A.1283.
new text endAll fees received must
be paid into the state treasury and credited to the agency's training account. Money in the
account is appropriated to the agency to pay expenses related to training.

new text begin (b) new text endThe information required in new text beginparagraph (a), new text endclause deleted text begin(m)deleted text endnew text begin (13),new text end must be submitted in
every odd-numbered year to the commissioner on a form provided by the commissioner.
The commissioner shall provide technical assistance if requested by the governmental
subdivision.

new text begin (c) new text endThe powers and duties given the agency in this subdivision also apply to permits
issued under chapter 114C.

Sec. 3.

Minnesota Statutes 2020, section 115.455, is amended to read:


115.455 EFFLUENT LIMITATIONS; COMPLIANCE.

To the extent allowable under federal law, for a municipality that constructs a publicly
owned treatment works new text beginor for an industrial national pollutant discharge elimination system
and state disposal system permit holder that constructs a treatment works
new text endto comply with a
new or modified effluent limitation, compliance with any new or modified effluent limitation
adopted after construction begins that would require additional capital investment is required
no sooner than 16 years after the date the facility begins operating.

Sec. 4.

Minnesota Statutes 2020, section 115.77, subdivision 1, is amended to read:


Subdivision 1.

Fees.

The agency shall collect fees in amounts necessary, but no greater
than the amounts necessary, to cover the reasonable costs of reviewing applications and
issuing certifications.new text begin The fees under this subdivision are subject to legislative approval
under section 16A.1283.
new text end

Sec. 5.

Minnesota Statutes 2020, section 115.84, subdivision 2, is amended to read:


Subd. 2.

Rules.

The agency may adopt rules to govern certification of laboratories
according to this section. deleted text beginNotwithstanding section 16A.1283, the agency may adopt rules
establishing fees.
deleted text end

Sec. 6.

Minnesota Statutes 2020, section 115.84, subdivision 3, is amended to read:


Subd. 3.

Fees.

(a) Until the agency adopts a rule establishing fees for certification, the
agency shall collect fees from laboratories registering with the agency, but not accredited
by the commissioner of health under sections 144.97 to 144.99, in amounts necessary to
cover the reasonable costs of the certification program, including reviewing applications,
issuing certifications, and conducting audits and compliance assistance.new text begin The fees under this
paragraph are subject to legislative approval under section 16A.1283.
new text end

(b) Fees under this section must be based on the number, type, and complexity of
analytical methods that laboratories are certified to perform.

(c) Revenue from fees charged by the agency for certification deleted text beginshalldeleted text endnew text begin mustnew text end be credited to
the environmental fund.

Sec. 7.

Minnesota Statutes 2020, section 116.03, subdivision 2b, is amended to read:


Subd. 2b.

Permitting efficiency.

(a) It is the goal of the state that environmental and
resource management permits be issued or denied within 90 days for tier 1 permits or 150
days for tier 2 permits following submission of a permit application. The commissioner of
the Pollution Control Agency shall establish management systems designed to achieve the
goal. For the purposes of this section, "tier 1 permits" are permits that do not require
individualized actions or public comment periods, and "tier 2 permits" are permits that
require individualized actions or public comment periods.

(b) The commissioner deleted text beginshalldeleted text endnew text begin mustnew text end prepare deleted text beginan annualdeleted text endnew text begin semiannualnew text end permitting efficiency
deleted text begin reportdeleted text endnew text begin reportsnew text end that deleted text beginincludesdeleted text endnew text begin includenew text end statistics on meeting the new text begintier 2 new text endgoal in paragraph (a) and
the criteria for tier 2 by permit categories. The deleted text beginreport isdeleted text endnew text begin reports arenew text end due new text beginon February 1 and
new text end August 1 each year. For permit applications that have not met the goal, deleted text beginthedeleted text endnew text begin eachnew text end report must
state the reasons for not meeting the goal. In stating the reasons for not meeting the goal,
the commissioner deleted text beginshalldeleted text endnew text begin mustnew text end separately identify delays caused by the responsiveness of the
proposer, deleted text beginlack of staff,deleted text end scientific or technical disagreements, or the level of public
engagement. deleted text beginThedeleted text endnew text begin Eachnew text end report must specify the number of days from initial submission of
the application to the day of determination that the application is complete. deleted text beginThedeleted text endnew text begin Eachnew text end report
must aggregate the data for the deleted text beginyeardeleted text endnew text begin reporting periodnew text end and assess whether program or system
changes are necessary to achieve the goalnew text begin. If program or system changes are necessary to
achieve the goal, the commissioner must implement those changes. Whenever a report
required by this subdivision states the number of permits completed within a particular
period, the report must, immediately after the number and in parentheses, state the percentage
of total applications received for that permit category that the number represents. Whenever
a report required by this subdivision states the number of permits completed within a
particular period, the report must separately state completion data for industrial and municipal
permits
new text end. The deleted text beginreportdeleted text endnew text begin reportsnew text end must be posted on the agency's website and submitted to the
governor and the chairs and ranking minority members of the house of representatives and
senate committees having jurisdiction over environment policy and finance.

(c) The commissioner shall allow electronic submission of environmental review and
permit documents to the agency.

(d) Within 30 business days of application for a permit subject to paragraph (a), the
commissioner of the Pollution Control Agency shall notify the permit applicant, in writing,
whether the application is complete or incomplete. If the commissioner determines that an
application is incomplete, the notice to the applicant must enumerate all deficiencies, citing
specific provisions of the applicable rules and statutes, and advise the applicant on how the
deficiencies can be remedied. If the commissioner determines that the application is complete,
the notice must confirm the application's tier 1 or tier 2 permit status. If the commissioner
believes that a complete application for a tier 2 construction permit cannot be issued within
the 150-day goal, the commissioner must provide notice to the applicant with the
commissioner's notice that the application is complete and, upon request of the applicant,
provide the permit applicant with a schedule estimating when the agency will begin drafting
the permit and issue the public notice of the draft permit. This paragraph does not apply to
an application for a permit that is subject to a grant or loan agreement under chapter 446A.

(e) For purposes of this subdivision, "permit professional" means an individual not
employed by the Pollution Control Agency who:

(1) has a professional license issued by the state of Minnesota in the subject area of the
permit;

(2) has at least ten years of experience in the subject area of the permit; and

(3) abides by the duty of candor applicable to employees of the Pollution Control Agency
under agency rules and complies with all applicable requirements under chapter 326.

(f) Upon the agency's request, an applicant relying on a permit professional must
participate in a meeting with the agency before submitting an application:

(1) at least two weeks prior to the preapplication meeting, the applicant must submit at
least the following:

(i) project description, including, but not limited to, scope of work, primary emissions
points, discharge outfalls, and water intake points;

(ii) location of the project, including county, municipality, and location on the site;

(iii) business schedule for project completion; and

(iv) other information requested by the agency at least four weeks prior to the scheduled
meeting; and

(2) during the preapplication meeting, the agency shall provide for the applicant at least
the following:

(i) an overview of the permit review program;

(ii) a determination of which specific application or applications will be necessary to
complete the project;

(iii) a statement notifying the applicant if the specific permit being sought requires a
mandatory public hearing or comment period;

(iv) a review of the timetable established in the permit review program for the specific
permit being sought; and

(v) a determination of what information must be included in the application, including
a description of any required modeling or testing.

(g) The applicant may select a permit professional to undertake the preparation of the
permit application and draft permit.

(h) If a preapplication meeting was held, the agency shall, within seven business days
of receipt of an application, notify the applicant and submitting permit professional that the
application is complete or is denied, specifying the deficiencies of the application.

(i) Upon receipt of notice that the application is complete, the permit professional shall
submit to the agency a timetable for submitting a draft permit. The permit professional shall
submit a draft permit on or before the date provided in the timetable. Within 60 days after
the close of the public comment period, the commissioner shall notify the applicant whether
the permit can be issued.

(j) Nothing in this section shall be construed to modify:

(1) any requirement of law that is necessary to retain federal delegation to or assumption
by the state; or

(2) the authority to implement a federal law or program.

(k) The permit application and draft permit shall identify or include as an appendix all
studies and other sources of information used to substantiate the analysis contained in the
permit application and draft permit. The commissioner shall request additional studies, if
needed, and the permit applicant shall submit all additional studies and information necessary
for the commissioner to perform the commissioner's responsibility to review, modify, and
determine the completeness of the application and approve the draft permit.

new text begin (l) If an environmental or resource management permit is not issued or denied within
the applicable period described in paragraph (a), the commissioner must immediately begin
review of the application and must take all steps necessary to issue the final permit, deny
the permit, or issue the public notice for the draft permit within 150 days of the expiration
of the applicable period described in paragraph (a). The commissioner may extend the period
for up to 60 days by issuing a written notice to the applicant stating the length of and reason
for the extension. A time limit under this paragraph may be extended through written
agreement between the commissioner and the applicant.
new text end

Sec. 8.

Minnesota Statutes 2020, section 116.07, subdivision 4d, is amended to read:


Subd. 4d.

Permit fees.

(a) The agency may collect permit fees in amounts not greater
than those necessary to cover the reasonable costs of developing, reviewing, and acting
upon applications for agency permits and implementing and enforcing the conditions of the
permits pursuant to agency rules. Permit fees deleted text beginshalldeleted text endnew text begin mustnew text end not include the costs of litigation.
The fee schedule must reflect reasonable and routine direct and indirect costs associated
with permitting, implementation, and enforcement. The agency may impose an additional
enforcement fee to be collected for deleted text begina period ofdeleted text end up to two years to cover the reasonable costs
of implementing and enforcing the conditions of a permit under the rules of the agency.
new text begin Water fees under this paragraph are subject to legislative approval under section 16A.1283.
new text end Any money collected under this paragraph deleted text beginshalldeleted text endnew text begin mustnew text end be deposited in the environmental
fund.

(b) Notwithstanding paragraph (a), the agency shall collect an annual fee from the owner
or operator of all stationary sources, emission facilities, emissions units, air contaminant
treatment facilities, treatment facilities, potential air contaminant storage facilities, or storage
facilities subject to a notification, permit, or license requirement under this chapter,
subchapters I and V of the federal Clean Air Act, United States Code, title 42, section 7401
et seq., or rules adopted thereunder. The annual fee deleted text beginshalldeleted text endnew text begin mustnew text end be used to pay for all direct
and indirect reasonable costs, including legal costs, required to develop and administer the
notification, permit, or license program requirements of this chapter, subchapters I and V
of the federal Clean Air Act, United States Code, title 42, section 7401 et seq., or rules
adopted thereunder. Those costs include the reasonable costs of reviewing and acting upon
an application for a permit; implementing and enforcing statutes, rules, and the terms and
conditions of a permit; emissions, ambient, and deposition monitoring; preparing generally
applicable regulations; responding to federal guidance; modeling, analyses, and
demonstrations; preparing inventories and tracking emissions; and providing information
to the public about these activities.

(c) The agency shall set fees that:

(1) will result in the collection, in the aggregate, from the sources listed in paragraph
(b), of an amount not less than $25 per ton of each volatile organic compound; pollutant
regulated under United States Code, title 42, section 7411 or 7412 (section 111 or 112 of
the federal Clean Air Act); and each pollutant, except carbon monoxide, for which a national
primary ambient air quality standard has been promulgated;

(2) may result in the collection, in the aggregate, from the sources listed in paragraph
(b), of an amount not less than $25 per ton of each pollutant not listed in clause (1) that is
regulated under this chapter or air quality rules adopted under this chapter; and

(3) shall collect, in the aggregate, from the sources listed in paragraph (b), the amount
needed to match grant funds received by the state under United States Code, title 42, section
7405 (section 105 of the federal Clean Air Act).

The agency must not include in the calculation of the aggregate amount to be collected
under clauses (1) and (2) any amount in excess of 4,000 tons per year of each air pollutant
from a source. The increase in air permit fees to match federal grant funds deleted text beginshall bedeleted text endnew text begin isnew text end a
surcharge on existing fees. The commissioner may not collect the surcharge after the grant
funds become unavailable. In addition, the commissioner shall use nonfee funds to the extent
practical to match the grant funds so that the fee surcharge is minimized.

(d) To cover the reasonable costs described in paragraph (b), the agency shall provide
in the rules promulgated under paragraph (c) for an increase in the fee collected in each
year by the percentage, if any, by which the Consumer Price Index for the most recent
calendar year ending before the beginning of the year the fee is collected exceeds the
Consumer Price Index for the calendar year 1989. For purposes of this paragraphnew text begin,new text end the
Consumer Price Index for any calendar year is the average of the Consumer Price Index for
all-urban consumers published by the United States Department of Labor, as of the close
of the 12-month period ending on August 31 of each calendar year. The revision of the
Consumer Price Index that is most consistent with the Consumer Price Index for calendar
year 1989 deleted text beginshalldeleted text endnew text begin mustnew text end be used.

(e) Any money collected under paragraphs (b) to (d) must be deposited in the
environmental fund and must be used solely for the activities listed in paragraph (b).

(f) Permit applicants who wish to construct, reconstruct, or modify a project may offer
to reimburse the agency for the costs of staff time or consultant services needed to expedite
the preapplication process and permit development process through the final decision on
the permit, including the analysis of environmental review documents. The reimbursement
deleted text begin shall bedeleted text endnew text begin isnew text end in addition to permit application fees imposed by law. When the agency determines
that it needs additional resources to develop the permit application in an expedited mannerdeleted text begin,deleted text end
and that expediting the development is consistent with permitting program priorities, the
agency may accept the reimbursement. The commissioner must give the applicant an estimate
of costs to be incurred by the commissioner. The estimate must include a brief description
of the tasks to be performed, a schedule for completing the tasks, and the estimated cost for
each task. The applicant and the commissioner must enter into a written agreement detailing
the estimated costs for the expedited permit decision-making process to be incurred by the
agency. The agreement must also identify staff anticipated to be assigned to the project.
The commissioner must not issue a permit until the applicant has paid all fees in full. The
commissioner must refund any unobligated balance of fees paid. Reimbursements accepted
by the agency are appropriated to the agency for the purpose of developing the permit or
analyzing environmental review documents. Reimbursement by a permit applicant deleted text beginshalldeleted text endnew text begin
must
new text end precede and not be contingent upon issuance of a permit; deleted text beginshalldeleted text endnew text begin mustnew text end not affect the
agency's decision on whether to issue or deny a permit, what conditions are included in a
permit, or the application of state and federal statutes and rules governing permit
determinations; and deleted text beginshalldeleted text endnew text begin mustnew text end not affect final decisions regarding environmental review.

(g) The fees under this subdivision are exempt from section 16A.1285.

Sec. 9.

Minnesota Statutes 2020, section 116.07, is amended by adding a subdivision to
read:


new text begin Subd. 13. new text end

new text begin Unadopted rules. new text end

new text begin (a) The commissioner of the Pollution Control Agency
must not enforce or attempt to enforce an unadopted rule. For purposes of this subdivision,
"unadopted rule" means a guideline, bulletin, criterion, manual standard, interpretive
statement, policy plan, or similar pronouncement if the guideline, bulletin, criterion, manual
standard, interpretive statement, policy plan, or similar pronouncement has not been adopted
according to the rulemaking process provided under chapter 14. If an unadopted rule is
challenged under section 14.381, the commissioner must cease enforcement of the unadopted
rule and overcome a presumption that the unadopted rule must be adopted according to the
rulemaking process provided under chapter 14.
new text end

new text begin (b) Before the commissioner incorporates by reference an internal guideline, bulletin,
criterion, manual standard, interpretive statement, policy plan, or similar pronouncement
into a standard, permit, or contract, the commissioner must follow the rulemaking process
provided under chapter 14 to adopt, amend, revise, or incorporate any such guideline,
bulletin, criterion, manual standard, interpretive statement, policy plan, or similar
pronouncement.
new text end

Sec. 10.

Minnesota Statutes 2020, section 116D.04, subdivision 2a, is amended to read:


Subd. 2a.

When prepared.

(a) Where there is potential for significant environmental
effects resulting from any major governmental action, the action must be preceded by a
detailed environmental impact statement prepared by the responsible governmental unit.
The environmental impact statement must be an analytical rather than an encyclopedic
document that describes the proposed action in detail, analyzes its significant environmental
impacts, discusses appropriate alternatives to the proposed action and their impacts, and
explores methods by which adverse environmental impacts of an action could be mitigated.
The environmental impact statement must also analyze those economic, employment, and
sociological effects that cannot be avoided should the action be implemented. To ensure its
use in the decision-making process, the environmental impact statement must be prepared
as early as practical in the formulation of an action.

(b) The board shall by rule establish categories of actions for which environmental
impact statements and for which environmental assessment worksheets must be prepared
as well as categories of actions for which no environmental review is required under this
section. A mandatory environmental assessment worksheet is not required for the expansion
of an ethanol plant, as defined in section 41A.09, subdivision 2a, paragraph (b), or the
conversion of an ethanol plant to a biobutanol facility or the expansion of a biobutanol
facility as defined in section 41A.15, subdivision 2d, based on the capacity of the expanded
or converted facility to produce alcohol fuel, but must be required if the ethanol plant or
biobutanol facility meets or exceeds thresholds of other categories of actions for which
environmental assessment worksheets must be prepared. The responsible governmental unit
for an ethanol plant or biobutanol facility project for which an environmental assessment
worksheet is prepared is the state agency with the greatest responsibility for supervising or
approving the project as a whole.

(c) A mandatory environmental impact statement is not required for a facility or plant
located outside the seven-county metropolitan area that produces less than 125,000,000
gallons of ethanol, biobutanol, or cellulosic biofuel annually, or produces less than 400,000
tons of chemicals annually, if the facility or plant is: an ethanol plant, as defined in section
41A.09, subdivision 2a, paragraph (b); a biobutanol facility, as defined in section 41A.15,
subdivision 2d; or a cellulosic biofuel facility. A facility or plant that only uses a cellulosic
feedstock to produce chemical products for use by another facility as a feedstock is not
considered a fuel conversion facility as used in rules adopted under this chapter.

(d) The responsible governmental unit shall promptly publish notice of the completion
of an environmental assessment worksheet by publishing the notice in at least one newspaper
of general circulation in the geographic area where the project is proposed, by posting the
notice on a website that has been designated as the official publication site for publication
of proceedings, public notices, and summaries of a political subdivision in which the project
is proposed, or in any other manner determined by the board and shall provide copies of
the environmental assessment worksheet to the board and its member agencies. Comments
on the need for an environmental impact statement may be submitted to the responsible
governmental unit during a 30-day period following publication of the notice that an
environmental assessment worksheet has been completed. The responsible governmental
unit may extend the 30-day comment period for an additional 30 days one time. Further
extensions of the comment period may not be made unless approved by the project's proposer.
The responsible governmental unit's decision on the need for an environmental impact
statement must be based on the environmental assessment worksheet and the comments
received during the comment period, and must be made within 15 days after the close of
the comment period. The board's chair may extend the 15-day period by not more than 15
additional days upon the request of the responsible governmental unit.

(e) An environmental assessment worksheet must also be prepared for a proposed action
whenever material evidence accompanying a petition by not less than 100 individuals who
reside or own property in deleted text beginthe statedeleted text endnew text begin a county where the proposed action will be undertaken
or in one or more adjoining counties
new text end, submitted before the proposed project has received
final approval by the appropriate governmental units, demonstrates that, because of the
nature or location of a proposed action, there may be potential for significant environmental
effects. Petitions requesting the preparation of an environmental assessment worksheet must
be submitted to the board. The chair of the board shall determine the appropriate responsible
governmental unit and forward the petition to it. A decision on the need for an environmental
assessment worksheet must be made by the responsible governmental unit within 15 days
after the petition is received by the responsible governmental unit. The board's chair may
extend the 15-day period by not more than 15 additional days upon request of the responsible
governmental unit.

(f) Except in an environmentally sensitive location where Minnesota Rules, part
4410.4300, subpart 29, item B, applies, the proposed action is exempt from environmental
review under this chapter and rules of the board, if:

(1) the proposed action is:

(i) an animal feedlot facility with a capacity of less than 1,000 animal units; or

(ii) an expansion of an existing animal feedlot facility with a total cumulative capacity
of less than 1,000 animal units;

(2) the application for the animal feedlot facility includes a written commitment by the
proposer to design, construct, and operate the facility in full compliance with Pollution
Control Agency feedlot rules; and

(3) the county board holds a public meeting for citizen input at least ten business days
before the Pollution Control Agency or county issuing a feedlot permit for the animal feedlot
facility unless another public meeting for citizen input has been held with regard to the
feedlot facility to be permitted. The exemption in this paragraph is in addition to other
exemptions provided under other law and rules of the board.

(g) The board may, before final approval of a proposed project, require preparation of
an environmental assessment worksheet by a responsible governmental unit selected by the
board for any action where environmental review under this section has not been specifically
provided for by rule or otherwise initiated.

(h) An early and open process must be used to limit the scope of the environmental
impact statement to a discussion of those impacts that, because of the nature or location of
the project, have the potential for significant environmental effects. The same process must
be used to determine the form, content, and level of detail of the statement as well as the
alternatives that are appropriate for consideration in the statement. In addition, the permits
that will be required for the proposed action must be identified during the scoping process.
Further, the process must identify those permits for which information will be developed
concurrently with the environmental impact statement. The board shall provide in its rules
for the expeditious completion of the scoping process. The determinations reached in the
process must be incorporated into the order requiring the preparation of an environmental
impact statement.

(i) The responsible governmental unit shall, to the extent practicable, avoid duplication
and ensure coordination between state and federal environmental review and between
environmental review and environmental permitting. Whenever practical, information
needed by a governmental unit for making final decisions on permits or other actions required
for a proposed project must be developed in conjunction with the preparation of an
environmental impact statement. When an environmental impact statement is prepared for
a project requiring multiple permits for which two or more agencies' decision processes
include either mandatory or discretionary hearings before a hearing officer before the
agencies' decision on the permit, the agencies may, notwithstanding any law or rule to the
contrary, conduct the hearings in a single consolidated hearing process if requested by the
proposer. All agencies having jurisdiction over a permit that is included in the consolidated
hearing shall participate. The responsible governmental unit shall establish appropriate
procedures for the consolidated hearing process, including procedures to ensure that the
consolidated hearing process is consistent with the applicable requirements for each permit
regarding the rights and duties of parties to the hearing, and shall use the earliest applicable
hearing procedure to initiate the hearing. All agencies having jurisdiction over a permit
identified in the draft environmental assessment worksheet scoping document must begin
reviewing any permit application upon publication of the notice of preparation of the
environmental impact statement.

(j) An environmental impact statement must be prepared and its adequacy determined
within 280 days after notice of its preparation unless the time is extended by consent of the
parties or by the governor for good cause. The responsible governmental unit shall determine
the adequacy of an environmental impact statement, unless within 60 days after notice is
published that an environmental impact statement will be prepared, the board chooses to
determine the adequacy of an environmental impact statement. If an environmental impact
statement is found to be inadequate, the responsible governmental unit has 60 days to prepare
an adequate environmental impact statement.

(k) The proposer of a specific action may include in the information submitted to the
responsible governmental unit a preliminary draft environmental impact statement under
this section on that action for review, modification, and determination of completeness and
adequacy by the responsible governmental unit. A preliminary draft environmental impact
statement prepared by the project proposer and submitted to the responsible governmental
unit must identify or include as an appendix all studies and other sources of information
used to substantiate the analysis contained in the preliminary draft environmental impact
statement. The responsible governmental unit shall require additional studies, if needed,
and obtain from the project proposer all additional studies and information necessary for
the responsible governmental unit to perform its responsibility to review, modify, and
determine the completeness and adequacy of the environmental impact statement.

Sec. 11. new text beginANALYSIS OF WISCONSIN'S GREEN TIER PROGRAM.
new text end

new text begin The commissioner of the Pollution Control Agency must conduct an analysis of the
Green Tier Program operated in Wisconsin under Wisconsin Statutes, section 299.83, which
recognizes and rewards environmental performance that voluntarily exceeds legal
requirements related to health, safety, and the environment resulting in continuous
improvement in Wisconsin's environment, economy, and quality of life. By February 1,
2022, the commissioner must report the results of the analysis to the chairs and ranking
minority members of the house of representatives and senate committees and divisions with
jurisdiction over environment and natural resources. The report must include:
new text end

new text begin (1) an overview of how the program operates in Wisconsin;
new text end

new text begin (2) an assessment of benefits and challenges that would likely accompany the adoption
of a similar program in Minnesota;
new text end

new text begin (3) a comparison of the program with the Minnesota XL permit project operated under
Minnesota Statutes, sections 114C.10 to 114C.19;
new text end

new text begin (4) an assessment of what policy changes, legal changes, and funding would be required
to successfully implement a similar program in Minnesota; and
new text end

new text begin (5) any other related matters deemed relevant by the commissioner.
new text end

Sec. 12. new text beginSTATE IMPLEMENTATION PLAN REVISIONS.
new text end

new text begin (a) The commissioner of the Pollution Control Agency must seek approval from the
federal Environmental Protection Agency for revisions to the state's federal Clean Air Act
state implementation plan so that under the revised plan, the Pollution Control Agency is
prohibited from applying a national or state ambient air quality standard in a permit issued
solely to authorize operations to continue at an existing facility with unmodified emissions
levels. Nothing in this section shall be construed to require the commissioner to apply for
a revision that would prohibit the agency from applying a national or state ambient air
quality standard in a permit that authorizes an increase in emissions due to construction of
a new facility or in a permit that authorizes changes to existing facilities that result in a
significant net emissions increase of a regulated NSR pollutant, as defined in Code of Federal
Regulations, title 40, section 52.21(b)(50).
new text end

new text begin (b) The commissioner of the Pollution Control Agency must report quarterly to the chairs
and ranking minority members of the house of representatives and senate committees and
divisions with jurisdiction over environment and natural resources policy on the status of
efforts to implement paragraph (a) until the revisions required by paragraph (a) have been
either approved or denied.
new text end