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                            CHAPTER 405-H.F.No. 2171 
                  An act relating to state government; clarifying powers 
                  of the pollution control agency board and 
                  commissioner; amending Minnesota Statutes 1994, 
                  sections 116.03, as amended; and 514.673, subdivision 
                  3; Minnesota Statutes 1995 Supplement, section 116.02, 
                  by adding subdivisions. 
        BE IT ENACTED BY THE LEGISLATURE OF THE STATE OF MINNESOTA: 
           Section 1.  Minnesota Statutes 1995 Supplement, section 
        116.02, is amended by adding a subdivision to read: 
           Subd. 6.  The agency shall make final decisions on the 
        following matters: 
           (1) a petition for the preparation of an environmental 
        assessment worksheet, if the project proposer or a person 
        commenting on the proposal requests that the decision be made by 
        the agency and the agency requests that it make the decision 
        under subdivision 8; 
           (2) the need for an environmental impact statement 
        following preparation of an environmental assessment worksheet 
        under applicable rules, if: 
           (i) the agency has received a request for an environmental 
        impact statement; 
           (ii) the project proposer or a person commenting on the 
        proposal requests that the declaration be made by the agency and 
        the agency requests that it make the decision under subdivision 
        8; or 
           (iii) the commissioner is recommending preparation of an 
        environmental impact statement; 
           (3) the scope and adequacy of environmental impact 
        statements; 
           (4) issuance, reissuance, modification, or revocation of a 
        permit if: 
           (i) a variance is sought in the permit application or a 
        contested case hearing request is pending; or 
           (ii) the permit applicant, the permittee, or a person 
        commenting on the permit action requests that the decision be 
        made by the agency and the agency requests that it make the 
        decision under subdivision 8; 
           (5) final adoption or amendment of agency rules for which a 
        public hearing is required under section 14.25 or for which the 
        commissioner decides to proceed directly to a public hearing 
        under section 14.14, subdivision 1; 
           (6) approval or denial of an application for a variance 
        from an agency rule if: 
           (i) granting the variance request would change an air, 
        soil, or water quality standard; 
           (ii) the commissioner has determined that granting the 
        variance would have a significant environmental impact; or 
           (iii) the applicant or a person commenting on the variance 
        request requests that the decision be made by the agency and the 
        agency requests that it make the decision under subdivision 8; 
        and 
           (7) whether to reopen, rescind, or reverse a decision of 
        the agency. 
           Sec. 2.  Minnesota Statutes 1995 Supplement, section 
        116.02, is amended by adding a subdivision to read: 
           Subd. 7.  The commissioner may request that the agency make 
        additional decisions or provide advice to the commissioner. 
           Sec. 3.  Minnesota Statutes 1995 Supplement, section 
        116.02, is amended by adding a subdivision to read: 
           Subd. 8.  Any other action not specifically within the 
        authority of the commissioner shall be made by the agency if: 
           (1) prior to the commissioner's final decision on the 
        action, one or more members of the agency notify the 
        commissioner of their request that the decision be made by the 
        agency; or 
           (2) any person submits a petition to the commissioner 
        requesting that the decision be made by the agency and the 
        commissioner grants the petition.  
           If the commissioner denies a petition submitted under 
        clause (2), the commissioner shall advise the agency and the 
        petitioner of the reasons for the denial.  
           Sec. 4.  Minnesota Statutes 1995 Supplement, section 
        116.02, is amended by adding a subdivision to read: 
           Subd. 9.  The commissioner shall inform interested persons 
        as appropriate in public notices and other public documents of 
        their right to request the agency to make decisions in specific 
        matters provided in subdivision 6 and the right of agency 
        members to request that decisions be made by the agency as 
        provided in subdivision 8.  The commissioner shall also 
        regularly inform the agency of activities that have broad policy 
        implications or potential environmental significance and of 
        activities in which the public has exhibited substantial 
        interest.  
           Sec. 5.  Minnesota Statutes 1995 Supplement, section 
        116.02, is amended by adding a subdivision to read: 
           Subd. 10.  (a) The agency must not reopen, rescind, or 
        reverse a decision of the agency except upon:  
           (1) the affirmative vote of two-thirds of the agency; or 
           (2) a finding that there was an irregularity in a hearing 
        related to the decision, an error of law, or a newly discovered 
        material issue of fact. 
           (b) The requirements in paragraph (a) are minimum 
        requirements and do not limit the agency's authority under 
        sections 14.06 and 116.07, subdivision 3, to adopt rules: 
           (1) applying the requirement in paragraph (a), clause (1) 
        or (2), to certain decisions of the agency; or 
           (2) establishing additional or more stringent requirements 
        for reopening, rescinding, or reversing decisions of the agency. 
           Sec. 6.  Minnesota Statutes 1994, section 116.03, as 
        amended by Laws 1995, chapters 186, section 31, and 248, article 
        11, section 7, is amended to read: 
           116.03 [COMMISSIONER.] 
           Subdivision 1.  (a) The office of commissioner of the 
        pollution control agency is created and is under the supervision 
        and control of the commissioner, who is appointed by the 
        governor under the provisions of section 15.06. 
           (b) The commissioner may appoint a deputy director and an 
        assistant commissioner and assistant commissioners who shall be 
        in the unclassified service. 
           (c) The commissioner shall make all decisions on behalf of 
        the agency that are not required to be made by the agency under 
        section 116.02. 
           Subd. 2.  The commissioner shall organize the agency and 
        employ such assistants and other officers, employees and agents 
        as the commissioner may deem necessary to discharge the 
        functions of the commissioner's office, define the duties of 
        such officers, employees and agents, and delegate to them any of 
        the commissioner's powers, duties, and responsibilities, subject 
        to the commissioner's control and under such conditions as the 
        commissioner may prescribe.  The commissioner may also contract 
        with persons, firms, corporations, the federal government and 
        any agency or instrumentality thereof, the water research center 
        of the University of Minnesota or any other instrumentality of 
        such university, for doing any of the work of the commissioner's 
        office, and none of the provisions of chapter 16B, relating to 
        bids, shall apply to such contracts.  All personnel employed and 
        all contracts entered into pursuant to this subdivision shall be 
        subject to the approval of the pollution control agency. 
        Agreements to exercise delegated powers shall be by written 
        order filed with the secretary of state.  An employee of the 
        state commissioner of health engaged in environmental sanitation 
        work may transfer to the pollution control agency with the 
        approval of the commissioner.  Under such a transfer the 
        employee shall be assigned to a position of similar 
        responsibility and pay without loss of seniority, vacation, sick 
        leave, or other benefits under the state civil service act. 
           Subd. 2a.  [MISSION; EFFICIENCY.] It is part of the 
        agency's mission that within the agency's resources the 
        commissioner and the members of the agency shall endeavor to: 
           (1) prevent the waste or unnecessary spending of public 
        money; 
           (2) use innovative fiscal and human resource practices to 
        manage the state's resources and operate the agency as 
        efficiently as possible; 
           (3) coordinate the agency's activities wherever appropriate 
        with the activities of other governmental agencies; 
           (4) use technology where appropriate to increase agency 
        productivity, improve customer service, increase public access 
        to information about government, and increase public 
        participation in the business of government; 
           (5) utilize constructive and cooperative labor-management 
        practices to the extent otherwise required by chapters 43A and 
        179A; 
           (6) include specific objectives in the performance report 
        required under section 15.91 to increase the efficiency of 
        agency operations, when appropriate; and 
           (7) recommend to the legislature, in the performance report 
        of the agency required under section 15.91, appropriate changes 
        in law necessary to carry out the mission of the agency. 
           Subd. 3.  The commissioner of the pollution control agency 
        is the state agent to apply for, receive, and disburse federal 
        funds made available to the state by federal law or rules and 
        regulations promulgated thereunder for any purpose related to 
        the powers and duties of the pollution control agency or the 
        commissioner.  The commissioner shall comply with any and all 
        requirements of such federal law or such rules and regulations 
        promulgated thereunder to facilitate application for, receipt, 
        and disbursement of such funds.  All such moneys received by the 
        commissioner shall be deposited in the state treasury and are 
        hereby annually appropriated to the commissioner for the 
        purposes for which they are received.  None of such moneys in 
        the state treasury shall cancel and they shall be available for 
        expenditure in accordance with the requirements of federal law. 
           The provisions of section 3.3005 shall not apply to money 
        available under the federal Comprehensive Environmental 
        Response, Compensation, and Liability Act of 1980, United States 
        Code, title 42, sections 9601 to 9657, for which a state match 
        is not required or for which a state match is available under 
        the Environmental Response and Liability Act or from a political 
        subdivision.  The receipt of the money shall be reported to the 
        legislative advisory commission. 
           Subd. 4.  Before entering upon the duties of the office the 
        commissioner of the pollution control agency shall take and 
        subscribe an oath. 
           Subd. 5.  The salary of the commissioner of the pollution 
        control agency shall be prescribed by the governor, unless 
        otherwise fixed by law. 
           Subd. 6.  The term of the first director of the pollution 
        control agency shall expire with the term of the governor 
        expiring in January, 1971.  Thereafter, the term of the 
        commissioner shall be in conformity with the provisions of this 
        section. 
           Sec. 7.  Minnesota Statutes 1994, section 514.673, 
        subdivision 3, is amended to read: 
           Subd. 3.  [APPROVAL BY AGENCY OR PETROLEUM TANK RELEASE 
        COMPENSATION BOARD.] (a) The commissioner may not file an 
        environmental lien notice until the agency board for cleanup 
        action expenses incurred under chapter 115B, or the petroleum 
        tank release compensation board for cleanup action expenses 
        incurred under chapter 115C, the person referred to in section 
        514.672, subdivision 1, and each record owner and mortgagee of 
        the real property have been notified in writing of the 
        commissioner's intention to file the lien notice and the 
        requirements for filing the lien under paragraph (b) have been 
        met. 
           (b) By 30 days after receiving notification from the 
        commissioner under paragraph (a), the agency board or petroleum 
        tank release compensation board, after notice and opportunity 
        for the person referred to in section 514.672, subdivision 1, to 
        appear before the appropriate board, shall approve or disapprove 
        of the filing of the lien by the commissioner.  If the 
        appropriate board disapproves of the filing, the lien may not be 
        filed.  If the appropriate board approves of the filing or, in 
        the case of the petroleum tank release compensation board, takes 
        no action on the matter within the 30-day period, the 
        commissioner may file the lien notice. 
           Sec. 8.  [EFFECTIVE DATE.] 
           Sections 1 to 7 are effective June 1, 1996. 
           Presented to the governor March 29, 1996 
           Signed by the governor April 2, 1996, 10:26 a.m.