The Minnesota House omnibus environment and natural resources bill passed with a 73-to-60 vote. The bill includes $637 million for the DNR, $208 million for the Minnesota Pollution Control Agency and $39 million for the Board of Water and Soil Resources. A ban on wolf hunting was adopted with a one-vote margin. “I can guarantee you the agricultural community is going to be up in arms over this,” warned Roseau Republican Dan Fabian. The livestock losses associated with wolf depredation was emphasized, but the hunting ban amendment survived. Representative Paul Marquart, who is from Dilworth, sponsored an amendment dealing with stormwater runoff ponds at sugarbeet storage sites. “They would not need an engineered liner in these ponds unless there was a risk assessment that had taken place and deemed that there was a threat to groundwater. This is an agreement between MPCA and Minn-Dak Farmers Co-op.” The House bill also prohibits the use of neonicotinoid insecticides in wildlife management areas.
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