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Finding the Current Text: The Rules Publication Cycle

Drafters new to rules or not familiar with law publications need to learn a bit about rules publishing in order to find (and help readers find) the rules text they need.

Proposed rules are printed in the State Register. When they are adopted, the notice of adoption and any modifications to their text appear in another, later issue of the State Register. Ordinarily, cite the issue containing the notice of adoption.

Exempt rules generally appear only in the State Register, but other rules become part of the permanent set of Minnesota Rules. They may be published first in a pocket-part supplement. Supplements are cumulative, and each one specifies, on the cover, its cutoff dates.

Remember that a particular part might be published in the full edition, published again, as amended, in a supplement, and published a third time with more amendments in the State Register. To be certain that you are reading the current text of rules, check all three publications. Rule drafts are checked in the revisor's office to ensure that the current text is being amended.

You can also ask the revisor's office for a printout of the current text, which can be provided triple-spaced for easier editing. As an alternative to a printout, you can ask the revisor to provide you with a copy of current text on disk. You can also find out how the rules read by following the instructions under "How to Find a Rule" in the User's Guide in volume 1 of Minnesota Rules.

Rules are usually grouped under the state agency that administers them. Some agencies are allotted one chapter; others have many chapters. The chapters appear in alphabetical order by agency name; that is, the rules of the Board of Accountancy appear first, and the rules of the Minnesota Zoological Board appear last. In instances where an agency name has been changed, the rules of the agency have not been moved to a new alphabetical location. For example, rules of the Department of Human Services retain their original alphabetical arrangement under the Department of Welfare. The chapter listings in the front of each volume will help you find the agency you are looking for. One of the tables lists a numerical arrangement of chapter numbers. A second table appears as an alphabetic arrangement by agency name.

Within each chapter, the rules are arranged in a decimal numbering system. The decimal system allows for the later insertion of new rules without disturbing the original numbering scheme.

In a part number, the four digits to the left of the decimal point match the chapter number.

The four digits to the right of the decimal point assign a unique number to each rule in the chapter. No part number is smaller than .0001 or larger than .9999. All four decimal places are always expressed, even if they are filled by zeros.

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Organizing Your Draft: Elements to Avoid

To make material easy to cite, the revisor requires all rule material to be within a numbered part. This requirement means that drafters may not use prefaces, notes, appendixes, or other material that falls outside numbered parts.


If your draft has a section that you think of as an appendix, either put it in a numbered part so that it is clearly a rule or omit it from your proposed rules.


Do not use footnotes in rule drafts. Include the material in the text of the rule, or omit the material. For reference forms see chapter 4.


Do not use prefaces in rule drafts. If your draft has a section that you think of as a preface, either put it in a numbered part so that it is clearly a rule or omit it from your proposed rule.

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The Part and Its Divisions

The word "rule" is often loosely used to mean a numbered unit in Minnesota Rules. Actually, the term "rule" refers to any statement in Minnesota Rules, however short, and to any amendment or repeal of such a statement. The phrase "this rule" is therefore ambiguous and should not be used. The legal definition of the term "rule" can be found in Minnesota Statutes, section 14.02, subdivision 4.

The basic numbered unit in Minnesota Rules is called, not a rule, but a part. The divisions of rules are the part, subpart, item, subitem, unit, and subunit. The part is designated by an eight-digit number, such as 1001.0100. The subpart is designated by an Arabic number, such as Subpart 1. The item is designated by an uppercase letter, such as A. The subitem is designated by an Arabic number enclosed in parentheses, such as (1). The unit is designated by a lowercase letter in parentheses, such as (a), and the subunit by a lowercase roman numeral.

Parts numbers, or coding. All material in Minnesota Rules must have a part number; there are no unnumbered introductions or appendixes. A part number has eight digits. The four digits before the decimal point match the number of the chapter that contains the part. The four digits after the decimal point give the part a location within the chapter. So in chapter 1325 a reader might find parts 1325.0100, 1325.0150, 1325.0200, and so on in decimal order. Once part numbers are assigned to permanent rules, those part numbers cannot be reused.

The revisor's office will decide the coding of a new set of rules, but if an agency wants its rules coded in a specific place, it should suggest coding. If an agency wishes to change the numbering of its rules, it may do so.

Part headnotes. The part headnote announces the part's contents. It is not part of rule text and can be changed editorially by the revisor's office. Part headnotes should be typed in full capitals, ended with a period.

Subpart numbers. A part can be divided into subparts. The first is labeled "Subpart 1"; the second is labeled "Subp. 2"; all the rest are abbreviated like the second.

If the part has subparts, there should be no text between the part headnote and the words "Subpart 1." This ensures that all text is contained within the subparts. When rules are first drafted, there can be no subpart 1 without a subpart 2.

Subpart headnotes. Every subpart should have a headnote typed in upper and lowercase letters and end with a period.

Item letters. A part or subpart can be divided into items, labeled A, B, C, and so on. There can be no item A without an item B. Generally, item letters are used when the subpart contains some introductory material followed by a list. The listed items can be parts of a single sentence, separate sentences, or sometimes groups of sentences, so their capitalization and punctuation can vary. See the examples. Items are not given headnotes.

In an actual list, item letters are followed by periods, like this:


The applicant is responsible for the quality and the nature of the responses in the application form and the supporting materials.

A complete application includes the following:

  1. the appropriate application form with all spaces completed;

  2. authorizing signatures on the application form;

  3. a complete data summary form;

  4. all required resumes attached; and

  5. in applications from organizations, the name of the project director.

In citations, no periods are used: "The steps listed in items A to D must be followed in contested cases."

When a subpart contains several paragraphs that are not part of a list, they are left undesignated, not given item numbers. If they need designations so that they can be cited individually, they should be made separate subparts.

A part can be divided directly into items, skipping the subpart level. This is done when the part consists of a single paragraph but contains a complex list. See the example below.

Subitem numbers. If an item contains a list, it can be divided into subitems, labeled (1), (2), and so on.

Smaller divisions than the subitem - the unit labeled (a), (b) and the subunit labeled i, ii - exist in theory, but their use is discouraged. A part that is so far subdivided is probably too long and needs to be broken up into several parts.

The following examples show the basic layout of parts, subparts, and smaller divisions. Drafts of new or amendatory rules should use the patterns of indentation, capitalization, and punctuation shown on these pages.

Example: Part Divided into Subparts


Subpart 1. Form and time. The applicant must apply for examination to the commissioner or director on forms prescribed by them. The application form must be submitted at least 15 days before the date when the examination will be given.

Subp. 2. Proof of attendance. The commissioner may require the applicant to submit a copy of the school or college diploma, equivalency certificate, or other proof of school or college attendance or graduation.

Subp. 3. Fee. The examination fee must accompany the application.

Subp. 4. Review. The appropriate reviewing authority must review all information and documents needed to determine eligibility for examination and must notify the applicant of the applicant's status.

Example: Part Divided Directly into Items


The council has the following duties:

  1. to establish general policies for administering merit examinations and hearing personnel appeals as provided in parts 4670.3500 to 4670.3550;

  2. to hear appeals or to appoint either an appeal board of three members or a referee to hear appeals on its behalf; and

  3. to consult with the supervisor in formulating procedures to ensure conformity with the rules and the policies of the council.

Example: Subpart Divided into Items and Subitems

Subpart 1. Certificate for classes A, S-A, B, S-B, C, or S-C. Persons who apply for a Class A, S-A, B, S-B, C, or S-C certificate may substitute education for experience according to the formulas contained in items A and B:

  1. Except as noted in item B, the council may reduce the experience required in part 9400.0700, subparts 2 to 7, by up to six months for the successful completion of:

    1. each academic year beyond high school in which the applicant took courses relating to water supply and wastewater treatment, or in an appropriate branch of engineering, or the chemical or biological sciences; or

    2. 100 contact hours of courses relating to water supply or wastewater treatment.

  2. The council may not substitute the education referred to in item A for experience so as to reduce the experience requirement to less than one year.

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Devices for Grouping Parts: Centered Headings

A long set of rules sometimes needs headings that group its parts into subject areas. Even a short set of rules may need a heading to separate it from other rules in the chapter where it appears.

In Minnesota Rules, the centered headings work with the chapter titles and headnotes to help readers find particular subjects. If the running head says "Minnesota plumbing code," the centered heading says "Installation of devices" and the headnote says "Water meters," then you, the reader, know where you are in the universe of rules.

If headings are used within a draft of proposed rules, they must be in full capitals and centered on the page. Like headnotes to parts and subparts, they are editorial devices and are subject to change by the revisor's office.

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General Format of Rule Drafts

In rule drafts, the following elements should appear in order:

As well as following the format set out here, the draft should follow the style of punctuation, capitalization, forms of reference, and other mechanical matters set out in chapters 4 and 5. The complete format of a short amendatory rule appears in the example.

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Striking and Underscoring Text

New text in rules is marked with an underscore, like this. Text to be removed is shown with strikeouts, like this.

The form for entirely new proposed rules is fairly simple, as the example shows. After the heading, the new parts appear in numerical order, following the form requirements in chapter 1.

Most rule drafts, though, are for amendatory rules or combinations of new and amendatory rules. These drafts need special care on several matters of content and form.

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Should You Amend or Repeal?

Sometimes a drafter must decide whether to amend rules extensively or repeal them and reenact their substance in corrected, reorganized form. Each method has pluses and minuses. Rewriting and reenacting frees you to correct style and organization problems and usually gives you more part numbers to use, but it destroys the editorial history of the rules and makes it easy to lose material. Rewriting may also mean that existing requirements, which have already been reviewed and approved, may need to be reviewed all over again just because they are being presented in different words. Amending is sometimes tedious, but it preserves history. It also gives readers a clearer view of the changes you make.

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Term Changes

An agency sometimes needs to substitute one term for another throughout a chapter or within a range of several parts. For example, the term "mentally retarded persons" was changed to "persons with mental retardation or related conditions." Changes of this kind should be accomplished by an uncoded part with the headnote "Term changes," as shown in the following example.


The term "client" or similar term is substituted for "patient," "resident," "patient or resident," or similar terms wherever they appear in Minnesota Rules, parts 9515.1200 to 9515.2600.

The term "cost of care" is substituted for "per diem," wherever it appears in Minnesota Rules, parts 9515.1200 to 9515.2600.

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Preparing Copy for the Revisor's Office

If you submit drafts of amendatory rules to the revisor's office, you should not retype the text of the rules. Instead, photocopy the most up-to-date version of the rules. The revisor's office will supply clean copy of the current text. Handwritten changes on the photocopy, preferably in brightly colored ink. Even if you must prepare clean copies for your agency's needs, send marked photocopies to the revisor's office. Be sure to account for all the text within a part.

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Deciding How Much Text to Show

If you amend parts 1005.0100 and 1005.0300, your draft need not show part 1005.0200. But if you amend subpart 2 of a part that has five subparts, your draft must account for all five subparts; if you amend item A in a series that goes to item R, you must account for items B to R. Accounting for them does not necessarily mean printing their full text. You need only show enough text to give the public adequate notice of the nature of the amendment.

To account for subparts, items, or subitems whose text you decide not to show, write the note:

[For text of ......, see M.R.]

after the appropriate number or letter.

A note at the subpart level accounts for everything within that subpart; a note at the item level, for everything within that item, and so on.

Example: Amendatory Rule Using [For text of] at Subpart Level

Pollution Control Agency

Proposed Permanent Rules Relating to Low-Level Radioactive Waste Generator Fees


[For text of subpart 1, see M.R.]

Subp. 2. Amount of fees. A generator of low-level radioactive waste is subject to the following fees:

  1. A generator who ships 1,000 cubic feet or more of low-level radioactive waste per year to a facility for disposal is subject to a fee of 85 cents $6.65 per cubic foot of low-level radioactive waste shipped per year.

  2. A generator who ships at least 100 cubic feet of low-level radioactive waste per year to a facility for disposal is subject to a fee of $100 per year.

Example: Amendatory Rule Using [For text of] at Item Level


A complaint shall must contain:

[For text of items A to C, see M.R.]

D. a statement that the complainant understands that any hearing or action of the board concerning any complaint or investigation is confidential and all information obtained by the board is privileged until the board makes a finding on whether there is probable cause to conclude that a violation of Minnesota Statutes, sections 10A.01 to 10A.34 or other campaign laws has occurred, and that any person violating the confidentiality is guilty of a gross misdemeanor;

[For text of items E and F, see M.R.]

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Renumbering or Relettering Instructions

Subparts are not renumbered. To insert a new subpart between existing subparts 3 and 4, number it subpart 3a. If you add or delete material so that items or subitems need to be renumbered or relettered, you can renumber or reletter in one of two ways:

  1. If the text of the item or subitem being renumbered or relettered is also being changed with strikeouts and underscoring, strike the old letter or number and insert and underscore the new one.

    Example: Different Methods of Relettering


    Subpart 1. Verified statement. A person desiring to operate a barber school in Minnesota shall must present to the board a verified statement showing at least the following:

    [For text of items A and B, see M.R.]

    C. the address of the proposed school;

    D. a complete financial statement showing all assets and liabilities of the applicant and the plan of financing; and

    E. D. a plan of operation of the school setting forth the following information:

    [For text of subitems (1) to (8), see M.R.]

    [For text of subps 2 and 3, see M.R.]

  2. If the text of the item or subitem is not being changed, write a renumbering or relettering instruction at the end of the document. See the example below.

Whenever you reletter or renumber, check for internal references to the relettered and renumbered portions and correct them.

Example: Relettering With a Relettering Instruction at End


Subpart 1. Verified statement. A person desiring to operate a barber school in Minnesota shall present to the board a verified statement showing at least the following:

[For text of items A and B, see M.R.]

C. the address of the proposed school;

D. and E. See relettering instruction.

[For text of subps 2 and 3, see M.R.]

RELETTERING. Minnesota Rules, part 2100.5100, subpart 1, items D and E are relettered as C and D.

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Repealing Rules

To repeal an entire part or parts use the following form. Give the complete part number of every part being repealed. Do not use a range reference such as "parts 1005.0100 to 1005.1000.

Proposed Repeal of Rules on Nurses' Registration

REPEALER. Minnesota Rules, parts 6310.0200; 6310.0300; 6310.0400; 6310.0500; and 6310.0600, are repealed.

To repeal a subpart, follow the form in the example on this page. When a part or subpart has been repealed, its number cannot be reused. The number will continue to appear in Minnesota Rules with an editorial note of the State Register cite of the repealer.

Example: Repealer of Part and Subpart


A candidate who prepares and distributes a sample ballot which that contains the names of other candidates must include the proper disclaimer required for independent expenditures and must report the total cost of the preparation, printing, and distribution of the sample ballot unless the candidate is making an approved expenditure.


A candidate may sign a tax credit subsidy agreement at any time after registering a principal campaign committee for the office sought or held through December 31. An agreement signed on or after January 1, does not apply to a preceding calendar year.


[For text of subpart 1, see M.R.]

Subp. 2. Alternative report. Notwithstanding subpart 1, a lobbyist whose reportable disbursements in a reporting period total less than $100 and whose disclosure under part 4510.0600 would be less than $20 may file a statement to that effect in lieu of a lobbyist disbursement report. All previously unreported disbursements must be disclosed annually on the October 15 report, even though the total for the year is less than $100.

Subp. 3. {See repealer.}

REPEALER. Minnesota Rules, parts 4500.4050; and 4510.0400, subpart 3, are repealed.

Do not repeal anything smaller than a subpart. If you need to cancel the text of an item or subitem, or a sentence or clause within a paragraph, do it with strikeouts, in an amendment. Remember to do the necessary renumbering or relettering when you remove an item or subitem.

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Checking Cross-References

Whenever you repeal, renumber, or reletter material, check throughout Minnesota Rules for references that need to be changed or removed. The revisor's office can do a computer search for references to specific part numbers. The search will show, for each part number, the other parts in which that part is cited.

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Amending Headnotes

If you change the existing headnotes of parts or subparts, show the changes with strikeouts and underscoring. If you insert an entirely new part or subpart, do not underline the headnote. See the example.

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Changing Chapter Titles and Centered Headings

The set of Minnesota Rules is divided into chapters, and certain chapters are further divided with centered headings. See, for example, Minnesota Rules, chapter 1400, which has centered headings for its rules on administrative rulemaking hearings, contested case hearings, and revenue recapture act hearings.

If you amend rule text in a way that makes a chapter heading or centered heading inaccurate, amend that text as well. The revisor's office is technically responsible for editorial matters such as titles and headings, since they are not part of the text of the rules, but the revisor's office benefits from agencies' help in catching inaccuracies.

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Special Types of Amendments

Amendments after rules have been proposed. The special case of changes to rules after proposal, but before adoption, is discussed in Chapter 7.

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Submitting the Rules to the State Register

The revisor's office will deliver two copies of the proposed rules, approved for form, to the agency for submission to the State Register. The agency will also receive four extra copies of the rule for its own use. The copies produced by the revisor's office, with its form approval, are the only copies that may be submitted to the State Register.

Example: Rule as Proposed

5219.0010 PURPOSE.

This chapter is intended to provide a schedule of reasonable charges for copies of health care providers' records or reports substantiating the nature of a medical bill and its relationship to the work injury. The privacy of medical reports or records under other law is not affected by this chapter.

5219.0020 SCOPE.

This chapter applies to charges for copies from health care providers as defined in Minnesota Statutes, section 176.011, subdivision 24.


Subpart 1. Doctor's office notes. No charge is allowed for a copy of a doctor's office notes covering the services billed.

Subp. 2. Schedule of charges. Reasonable charges for other copies of existing medical records or reports obtained from health care providers under Minnesota Statutes, section 176.135, subdivision 7, are as follows for each patient:

  1. $5 per file as a retrieval fee;

  2. 75 cents a page for up to 20 pages;

  3. 50 cents a page for the next 32 pages; and

  4. 25 cents a page for all remaining pages.

Subp. 3. First report form, maximum medical improvement. Part 5220.2590, subpart 4, governs the physician's first report form and the maximum medical improvement form. No charge is allowed as provided in that part.

Example: Adding a Subpart


Subpart 1. Lobbyist disbursement report. A lobbyist shall must file a lobbyist disbursement report on each reporting date indicating whether or not the lobbyist has any reportable disbursements during a reporting period.

Subp. 1a. Alternative report. Notwithstanding subpart 1, a lobbyist whose reportable disbursements in a reporting period total less than $100 and whose disclosure under part 4510.0600 would be less than $20 may file a statement to that effect in lieu of a lobbyist disbursement report. All previously unreported disbursements must be disclosed annually on the October 15 report, even though the total for the year is less than $100.

[For text of subp 2, see M.R.]

Example: Draft Combining New and Amendatory Rules


An individual who is employed or appointed as an acting public official or who is employed part time as a public official is required to file a statement of economic interest.


A public official who holds a joint interest in a security, or in a partnership, must disclose ownership in the security or the partnership if the official's proportionate share of the holding is valued at $2,500 or more.


Subpart 1. Representative of a party must register. A representative of a party to a contested case rate proceeding before a state hearing examiner is required to register as a lobbyist if the representative meets the other qualifying requirements of Minnesota Statutes, section 10A.01, subdivision 11.

Subp. 2. Attempt to influence appeals. An individual who attempts to influence appeals proceedings which may follow determination of a rate, power plant and powerline sitting, or granting of a certificate of need under Minnesota Statutes, chapter 116H, is not required to register as a lobbyist.


Any A public official who, in the discharge of official duties, would be required to take action or make a decision which that would substantially affect his the official's financial interests, or those of a business with which he the official is associated, must file a potential conflict of interest notice, unless the effect on him is no greater than on other members of his the official's business classification, profession, or occupation.

Example: A Complete Draft of Proposed Rules

1900.0100 DEFINITIONS.

[For text of subps 1 to 6, see M.R.]

Subp. 6a. General support. "General support" means a program that provides unrestricted operational grants assistance to eligible organizations which meet the standards contained in this chapter.

[For text of subp 7, see M.R.]

Subp. 8. [See repealer.]

[For text of subps 9 and 10, see M.R.]

Subp. 10a. Project. "Project" means an activity or series of closely related activities for which funds are requested from the Minnesota State Arts Board or a regional arts council. The activity or series of activities must be completed within 24 months of the notification of the receipt of a grant in support of the activities.

[For text of subps 11 to 13, see M.R.]

Subp. 14. Regranting. "Regranting" means the process of allocating block grant funds to arts funding applicants to a regional arts council for the purpose of funding arts projects or programs or services described in the applications to regional arts councils.

Subp. 15. Services. "Services" means nongrant activities including, but not limited to, information services, technical and consultative services, planning, reporting, evaluation, and other program development efforts that are provided by the Minnesota State Arts Board or regional arts councils. Subp. 15a. Sponsor assistance. "Sponsor assistance" means a program which provides grants assistance to eligible organizations, which meet the standards contained in this chapter, that host arts events by contracting for the services of another organization or individual to provide arts programming to their community.

[For text of subp 16, see M.R.]

1900.0300 PURPOSE.

The purpose of this chapter is to set forth procedures and standards to be followed by the board in receiving, considering, and reviewing requests for and distribution of grants, loans, and other forms of assistance. Any actions taken by the board, its staff, and advisory committees related to the review and distribution of grants must be clearly based on the standards in rule form. Explanation of actions requested by applicants must be offered in the context of the standards in rule form.


Arts Board assistance is available to individuals, non-profit, tax exempt organizations, schools and governmental units and departments and agencies of the state.

Local/regional arts development assistance is available to non-profit, tax exempt organizations or units of government, including schools. This assistance is for the creation and production of arts programs or projects which are for the development or enhancement of local or regional artists or arts resources.

Arts Board grants assistance is available to the following individual applicants:

  1. artists who directly produce new works of art such as, but not limited to, playwrights, composers, librettists, creative prose writers, independent filmmakers, video artists, visual artists, craftspeople, choreographers, poets, fiction writers, conceptual artists and artists working in multi-media fields;

  2. arts teachers, only if the teacher is pursuing professional development as an artist, not as a teacher;

  3. individual artists, who have received a MSAB Fellowship grant, cannot apply for another Fellowship grant until two fiscal year after the receipt of the Fellowship grant;

  4. students, those who are pursuing either full-time or part-time a performance or academic degree in their creative field, may not apply for Fellowships, but may apply for Project or Works in Progress grants.

Subject to parts 1900.5200 to 1900.5500 and the other provisions contained in parts 1900.0100 to 1900.2000, an individual artist is eligible for grants assistance only if that artist is:

  1. a resident of Minnesota according to the voting requirements of the state; and

  2. not involved in executing work initiated or completed by another individual or organization as their agent, or not solely involved in the organization or presentation of other artists' works.

1900.1300 DEFINITIONS.

[For text of subpart 1, see M.R.]

Subp. 2. Applicant. "Applicant" means any Minnesota resident who submits an application for a grant, loan, or other form of assistance, or any organization, department or agency of the state, or political subdivision on whose behalf an application for a grant is submitted.

[For text of subps 3 and 4, see M.R.]

Subp. 4a. Cosponsor. "Cosponsor" means a partnership of two or more organizations and/or governmental units to present arts activities within a community or school which submits one grant application.

Subp. 5. Fiscal agent. "Fiscal agent" means any Minnesota nonprofit tax-exempt organization or governmental unit which applies to the board on behalf of an organization or group not meeting the nonprofit tax-exempt requirements. The fiscal agent must sign the application and, if a grant is received, sign the grant letter/contract. The fiscal agent is legally responsible for the completion of the project and for the proper management of the grant funds.

[For text of subps 6 to 14, see M.R.]


The applicant is responsible for the quality and the nature of the responses in the application form and the supporting materials.

A complete application includes the following:

  1. the appropriate application form with all spaces completed;

  2. authorizing signatures on the application form;

  3. a complete data summary form;

  4. all required resumes attached;

  5. in applications from organizations, the name of the project director;

  6. in applications from individual artists, the required supporting materials;

  7. where applicable, a copy of the contract with the fiscal agent; and

  8. postmark or delivery by the stated deadlines in program information.


Minnesota Rules, parts 1900.0100, subpart 8; and 1900.0450, are repealed.

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