Governor Mark Dayton signed legislation today to streamline the environmental review and permitting process for businesses in Minnesota.
Dayton issued an executive order in January directing the DNR and MPCA to begin speeding up the permitting process. Republicans included many of the same goals in their bill, including a requirement that state agencies issue or deny all all environmental permits within 150 days of submission. In a letter to the bill’s chief authors, Dayton wrote that he shares their desire to help businesses locate or expand in Minnesota. He added that too many such projects have been unnecessarily delayed in recent years.
House Speaker Kurt Zellers praised the governor for signing the bill, which he said will provide businesses more certainty.
Conservation groups opposed a provision in the bill that allows developers to hire their own consultants to prepare an environmental impact statement.