This bill is opposed by members of the MEP because it rolls back and weakens Minnesota’s bedrock environmental laws, such as:
- A provision requiring draft permits to be issued in 150 days, a “one size fits all” deadline for which no justification has been given. Note that agencies are issuing over 90 percent of all permits within the timelines set by the Legislature in previous streamlining bills.
- A provision that allows private companies to draft environmental review documents, which will remove accountability and transparency. If an EIS is written by a private party rather than a government entity, the public will not have access to the documents relied upon for the EIS.
- A change in the permit to mine statute that removes the option of a contested case hearing, leaving the Court of Appeals as the only choice for those raising issues about a permit to mine.
- The complete elimination of the Environmental Quality Board, which works across agency silos to solve complex environmental problems such as frac sand mining, pollinator protection, and water sustainability. No credible reason has been given to abolish the EQB.
MNNPS joins 25 other organizations in opposing this legislation.