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SF 3952

as introduced - 91st Legislature (2019 - 2020) Posted on 03/05/2020 08:47am

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

Current Version - as introduced

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A bill for an act
relating to natural resources; facilitating greater coordination between Lessard-Sams
Outdoor Heritage Council, Clean Water Council, and Legislative-Citizen
Commission on Minnesota Resources; amending Minnesota Statutes 2018, sections
97A.056, subdivision 3; 114D.30, subdivision 6; 116P.05, subdivision 2.

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

Section 1.

Minnesota Statutes 2018, section 97A.056, subdivision 3, is amended to read:


Subd. 3.

Council recommendations.

(a) The council shall make recommendations to
the legislature on appropriations of money from the outdoor heritage fund that are consistent
with the constitution and state law and that will achieve the outcomes of existing natural
resource plans, including, but not limited to, the Minnesota Statewide Conservation and
Preservation Plan, that directly relate to the restoration, protection, and enhancement of
wetlands, prairies, forests, and habitat for fish, game, and wildlife, and that prevent forest
fragmentation, encourage forest consolidation, and expand restored native prairie. In making
recommendations, the council shall consider a range of options that would best restore,
protect, and enhance wetlands, prairies, forests, and habitat for fish, game, and wildlife.
The council's recommendations shall be submitted no later than January 15 each year. The
council shall present its recommendations to the senate and house of representatives
committees with jurisdiction over the environment and natural resources budget by February
15 in odd-numbered years, and within the first four weeks of the legislative session in
even-numbered years. The council's budget recommendations to the legislature shall be
separate from the Department of Natural Resource's budget recommendations.

(b) To encourage and support local conservation efforts, the council shall establish a
conservation partners program. Local, regional, state, or national organizations may apply
for matching grants for restoration, protection, and enhancement of wetlands, prairies,
forests, and habitat for fish, game, and wildlife, prevention of forest fragmentation,
encouragement of forest consolidation, and expansion of restored native prairie.

(c) The council deleted text beginmaydeleted text endnew text begin mustnew text end work with the Clean Water Council to identify projects that
are consistent with both the purpose of the outdoor heritage fund and the purpose of the
clean water fund.

(d) The council may make recommendations to the Legislative-Citizen Commission on
Minnesota Resources on scientific research that will assist in restoring, protecting, and
enhancing wetlands, prairies, forests, and habitat for fish, game, and wildlife, preventing
forest fragmentation, encouraging forest consolidation, and expanding restored native prairie.

(e) Recommendations of the council, including approval of recommendations for the
outdoor heritage fund, require an affirmative vote of at least nine members of the council.

(f) The council deleted text beginmaydeleted text endnew text begin mustnew text end work with the Clean Water Councildeleted text begin,deleted text endnew text begin andnew text end the Legislative-Citizen
Commission on Minnesota Resourcesdeleted text begin,deleted text endnew text begin and may work withnew text end the Board of Water and Soil
Resources, soil and water conservation districts, and experts from Minnesota State Colleges
and Universities and the University of Minnesota in developing the council's
recommendations.

(g) The council shall develop and implement a process that ensures that citizens and
potential recipients of funds are included throughout the process, including the development
and finalization of the council's recommendations. The process must include a fair, equitable,
and thorough process for reviewing requests for funding and a clear and easily understood
process for ranking projects.

(h) The council shall use the regions of the state based upon the ecological sections and
subsections developed by the Department of Natural Resources and establish objectives for
each region and subregion to achieve the purposes of the fund outlined in the state
constitution.

(i) The council shall develop and submit to the Legislative Coordinating Commission
plans for the first ten years of funding, and a framework for 25 years of funding, consistent
with statutory and constitutional requirements. The council may use existing plans from
other legislative, state, and federal sources, as applicable.

(j) By July 1 each year, the council shall provide counties with a list of project proposals
that include potential fee title land acquisitions in the county that is based on that year's
funding requests received by the council from nongovernmental organizations.

Sec. 2.

Minnesota Statutes 2018, section 114D.30, subdivision 6, is amended to read:


Subd. 6.

Recommended appropriations.

(a) The Clean Water Council shall recommend
to the governor and the legislature the manner in which money from the clean water fund
should be appropriated for the purposes stated in article XI, section 15, of the Minnesota
Constitution and section 114D.50.

(b) The council's recommendations must:

(1) be to protect, enhance, and restore water quality in lakes, rivers, and streams and to
protect groundwater from degradation and ensure that at least five percent of the clean water
fund is spent only to protect drinking water sources;

(2) be consistent with the purposes, policies, goals, and priorities in this chapter; and

(3) allocate adequate support and resources to identify degraded groundwater and
impaired waters, develop TMDLs, implement restoration of groundwater and impaired
waters, and provide assistance and incentives to prevent groundwater and surface waters
from becoming degraded or impaired and improve the quality of surface waters which are
listed as impaired but have no approved TMDL.

(c) The council must recommend methods of ensuring that awards of grants, loans, or
other funds from the clean water fund specify the outcomes to be achieved as a result of the
funding and specify standards to hold the recipient accountable for achieving the desired
outcomes. Expenditures from the fund must be appropriated by law.

new text begin (d) The council must work with the Lessard-Sams Outdoor Heritage Council and the
Legislative-Citizen Commission on Minnesota Resources in developing the council's
recommendations.
new text end

Sec. 3.

Minnesota Statutes 2018, section 116P.05, subdivision 2, is amended to read:


Subd. 2.

Duties.

(a) The commission shall recommend an annual or biennial legislative
bill for appropriations from the environment and natural resources trust fund and shall adopt
a strategic plan as provided in section 116P.08. Approval of the recommended legislative
bill requires an affirmative vote of at least 12 members of the commission.new text begin The commission
must work with the Lessard-Sams Outdoor Heritage Council and the Clean Water Council
in developing the commission's recommendations.
new text end

(b) It is a condition of acceptance of the appropriations made from the Minnesota
environment and natural resources trust fund, and oil overcharge money under section 4.071,
subdivision 2, that the agency or entity receiving the appropriation must submit a work plan
and annual or semiannual progress reports in the form determined by the Legislative-Citizen
Commission on Minnesota Resources, and comply with applicable reporting requirements
under section 116P.16. None of the money provided may be spent unless the commission
has approved the pertinent work plan. Modifications to the approved work plan and budget
expenditures shall be made through the amendment process established by the commission.
The commission shall ensure that the expenditures and outcomes described in the work plan
for appropriations funded by the environment and natural resources trust fund are met.

(c) The peer review procedures created under section 116P.08 must also be used to
review, comment, and report to the commission on research proposals applying for an
appropriation from the oil overcharge money under section 4.071, subdivision 2.

(d) The commission may adopt operating procedures to fulfill its duties under this chapter.

(e) As part of the operating procedures, the commission shall:

(1) ensure that members' expectations are to participate in all meetings related to funding
decision recommendations;

(2) recommend adequate funding for increased citizen outreach and communications
for trust fund expenditure planning;

(3) allow administrative expenses as part of individual project expenditures based on
need;

(4) provide for project outcome evaluation;

(5) keep the grant application, administration, and review process as simple as possible;
and

(6) define and emphasize the leveraging of additional sources of money that project
proposers should consider when making trust fund proposals.

Sec. 4. new text beginREPORT ON OPPORTUNITIES TO COORDINATE.
new text end

new text begin By February 1, 2021, the Lessard-Sams Outdoor Heritage Council, the Legislative-Citizen
Commission on Minnesota Resources, and the Clean Water Council must jointly submit a
report to the chairs and ranking minority members of the house of representatives and senate
committees and divisions with jurisdiction over environment and natural resources and
legacy policy and finance that includes:
new text end

new text begin (1) an explanation of measures that will be taken by each entity to better coordinate the
strategic planning and recommendations of each entity in a manner that maximizes
water-quality outcomes;
new text end

new text begin (2) an explanation of statutory changes that, if enacted, would lead to better water-quality
outcomes;
new text end

new text begin (3) a review of relevant recommendations from other sources, including the Putting
Minnesota on a Clean Water Trajectory
report by the Freshwater Society;
new text end

new text begin (4) identification of ways to increase coordination of each entity's activities with the
goals and objectives of the One Watershed, One Plan program; and
new text end

new text begin (5) identification of steps that will be taken by each entity to ensure that each funding
proposal heard by the entity includes an explanation of the specific ways in which the
proposal would, if funded, advance specific goals and objectives of one or both of the other
entities.
new text end