2016 Minnesota Legislative & Regulatory

Regulatory

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Legislative

The Legislature convened Tuesday, March 8, 2016. The Legislature adjourned sine die at midnight May 22, 2016. 

2016 Minnesota Legislative Guide

 

2016 House Bill Introductions

HF 848 (Davids): House Omnibus Tax bill.  Includes changes to elections for bonding to extend electric transmission territory. Companion Bill SF 826.
Status
: Introduced 2/12/15; referred to Taxes.  Re-referred to Property Tax and Local Government Finance Division 2/17/15.  Committee recommends Do Pass as amended; referred to Ways and Means 4/23/15.  Omnibus bill amendment approved; Minority report offered 4/25/15.  Third reading; bill passed as amended (74-58) 4/29/15.  Motion to reconsider passage failed (59-73) 4/29/15.  First reading in Senate 4/30/15.  Second reading 5/1/15. Amended to conform with SF 826; passed Senate (42-25) 5/4/15. House not concur; conference committee appointed:  Reps. Davids, Drazkowski, Barrett, Swedzinski and Lenczewski.  Senators Skoe, Rest, Dziedzic, Koenen, and Gazelka. No further action in 2015 session. Picked up from table and sent back to conference committee 5/18/16. Conference committee report issued 5/22/16.  House adopts Conference Report (123-10) 5/22/16.  Senate adopts Conference Report (55-12) 5/22/16. Pocket Veto by Governor June 7, 2016.

HF 963 (Hamilton): A bill setting forth requirements before utility may cross rail lines. See also companion bill SF 877.
Status: Introduced 2/16/15; referred to Job Growth & Energy. Ways and Means reports Do Pass 5/16/16. Second reading 5/17/16. Compared to SF 877, bills were not identical.  SF 877 substituted for HF 963 on House floor.  See SF 877. 

HF 2240 (Swedzinski): A bill requiring the MPUC provide a property rights ombudsman to assist landowners affected by a large energy facility construction; to be paid for by utility assessment. Companion Bill SF 2062.
Status: Introduced 4/17/15; referred to Job Growth & Energy Affordability. Set for hearing 3/30/16. Held over for possible inclusion in omnibus bill. 

HF 2486 (Baker):  A bill to allow revision of CIP goals for municipals and cooperatives; repeal of the 1 percent threshold for infrastructure efficiency counting towards CIP compliance. See also SF 2833.
Status: Pre-filed 1/29/16; referred to Job Growth and Energy Affordability Policy and Finance. Set for hearing 3/16/16. Held over for possible inclusion in Omnibus bill. Bill was included in House Omnibus bill, HF 3931.  Committee hearing set for April 18 and 19. See HF 2749. Language allowing municipals and cooperatives to count infrastructure-side savings passed as part of HF 2749See HF 2749, Lines 124.2 to 124.17.  Conference Committee report finalized 5/22/16.  Passed House (95-39) 5/22/16; Passed Senate (50-16) 5/22/16. Approved by Governor June 1, 2016. 

HF 2544 (Garofalo):  A bill to limit cumulative generation of net metered facilities in coop and municipal service territories to no more than 2 percent of the municipal's or cooperative's annual retail electric sales. See also companion bill SF 2612.
Status: Pre-filed 1/29/16; referred to Job Growth and Energy Affordability Policy and Finance.

HF 2545 (Garofalo):  A bill pertaining to IOUs and co-ops whose service territory has an annual unemployment rate of 40 percent or more; in such cases, the utility need not comply with several mandates of the state including the RES and CIP.
Status: Pre-filed 1/29/16; referred to Job Growth and Energy Affordability Policy and Finance.

HF 2589 (Green): A bill to eliminate the rulemaking authority of the MPCA and DNR.
Status: Introduced 3/8/16; referred to Environment & Natural Resources Policy and Finance. 

HF 2666 (Laine, Bly): A bill to revise ethics in government; including prohibiting legislators or agency heads from lobbying for 7 years, revising amounts that may be used to influence actions, and elections education.  See also companion bill SF 1401.
Status: Introduced 3/8/16; referred to Government Operations & Elections Policy.

HF 2682 (Lesch, S. Johnson): Requiring disclosure of certain government employee disciplinary actions.
Status: Introduced 3/8/16; referred to Public Safety & Crime Prevention Policy and Finance. 

HF 2817 (Newberger, Metsa): A bill to allocate a certain amount of Clean Power Plan allowances to cities whose employment has been harmed by the closure of coal plants. See also Companion Bill SF 2972.  
Status: Introduced 3/10/16; referred to Job Growth & Energy Affordability Policy and Finance. Committee reports Do Pass; referred to Ways and Means 4/7/16. No further action during session.

HF 2823 (Newberger, Isaacson): Allowing for emission-rate riders (automatic rate recovery) for IOUs for closures of certain coal facilities. See also Companion Bill SF 3052.
Status: Introduced 3/10/16; referred to Job Growth & Energy Affordability Policy and Finance.  

HF 2926 (Hortman, Mullery): A bill to establish the Climate Action Tax Credit; offering credits for investments in community solar, community wind, electric vehicles, DG, solar-thermal projects, and energy efficiency. 
Status: Introduced 3/10/16; referred to Job Growth & Energy Affordability Policy and Finance.  

HF 3028 (McDonald): Requiring that attorney fees must be paid by the utility/entity seeking eminent domain if the original offer was less than 85% of the final award.
Status: Introduced 3/14/16; referred to Civil Law and Data Practices.

HF 3071 (Schomacker): A bill to appropriate money from the general fund to promote the use of MN-generated clean energy.  See also Companion Bill SF 2688. 
Status: Introduced 3/14/16; referred to Job Growth and Energy Affordability Policy & Finance. 

HF 3074 (Swedzinski): A requirement that before marketing community solar to rate-payers, certain information must be verified to the rate-payer including generation estimates, pay-back estimates, and that the contract is fair. See also Companion Bill SF 3286. 
Status: Introduced 3/14/16; referred to Job Growth and Energy Affordability Policy & Finance. Set for hearing 3/30/16. Held over for possible inclusion in omnibus bill. Bill was included in House Omnibus bill, HF 3931.  Committee hearing set for April 18 and 19. See HF 2749. Language did not make final conference committee report for HF 2749. No further action during session. 

HF 3256 (Newberger): Requiring 5 new coal plants to be built at the site of the Sherburne County plant. 
Status: Introduced 3/17/16; referred to Job Growth and Energy Affordability Policy and Finance.

HF 3315 Garofalo): A bill to revise the energy assurance and emergency conservation plan, establish energy auditor standards and modifying siting for large solar facilities (1 MW or larger). See also Companion Bill SF 2989.
Status: Introduced 3/17/16; referred to Job Growth and Energy Affordability Policy and Finance. Held over for possible inclusion in omnibus bill. 

HF 3353 (Hamilton): A bill setting forth vegetation management practices for solar sites.  See also SF 2689.
Status: Introduced 3/17/16; referred to Job Growth and Energy Affordability Policy and Finance. Set for hearing 3/30/16. Committee reports Do Pass; referred to Agriculture Policy. Committee reports Do Pass as amended; referred to House floor 4/7/16.  Second reading on House floor 4/7/16. Passed House 126-0) 5/18/16.  Passed Senate (62-2) 5/22/16. Approved by Governor May 31, 2016. 

HF 3406 (Bly): A bill to create the Health and Climate Resiliency Commission to create a strategic plan to deal with the impacts of climate change on Minnesota. 
Status: Introduced 3/21/16; referred to Government Operations and Elections Policy.

HF 3470 (Vogel): A bill to put the use of franchise fees paid to a city by an IOU to a vote; reverse referendum provided for increasing franchise fees. See also Companion Bill SF 3413.
Status: Introduced 3/23/16; referred to Government Operations and Elections Policy. Committee reports Do Pass as amended; referred to Taxes 3/31/16.

HF 3480 (Newberger): to create a process for making complaints due to wind generation turbine noise; MPCA rulemaking authorized; MPUC docket to examine wind setbacks and noise.
Status: Introduced 3/23/16; referred to Environment & Natural Resources Policy and Finance. Recalled and re-referred to Job Growth and Energy Affordability 3/29/16.

HF 3490 (Gruenhagen): A bill requiring that the final offer for eminent domain be made to the landowner no later than 30 days after receipt of the owner's appraisal. 
Status: Introduced 3/23/16; referred to Civil Law and Data Practices.

HF 3508 (Fabian): To elect members of the MPUC in public elections.
Status: Introduced 3/23/16; referred to Government Operations & Elections Policy. Committee reports Adopt as amended; referred to Job Growth and Energy Affordability 4/1/16. Bill was included in House Omnibus bill, HF 3931.  Committee hearing set for April 18 and 19. See HF 2749. Language did not make final conference committee report for HF 2749.  No further action during session. 

HF 3513 (Garofalo): A bill to establish an electric vehicle promotion program for IOUs; includes state incentives/rebates.  See also Companion Bill SF 2405.
Status: Introduced 3/23/16; referred to Job Growth and Energy Affordability. See SF 2405.

HF 3517 (Newberger): A bill regulating the operation of drones (commercial and private) in the state. See also Companion Bill SF 3312.
Status: Introduced 3/23/16; referred to Transportation Policy and Finance. Committee report Do Pass as amended; referred to Government Operations & Elections Policy 3/30/16. Committee report Do Pass as amended; referred to Public Safety & Crime Prevention Policy & Finance 4/1/16. Committee reports Do Pass and referred to Ways and Means 4/7/16. No further action during session.

HF 3531 (Mullery): A bill to establish the Environmental Justice Act as part of the MPCA to establish and environmental justice policy. 
Status: Introduced 3/23/16; referred to Environment & Natural Resources.

HF 3554 (Sanders): A bill to prohibit charging fees to or otherwise regulating pole attachments for small wireless facilities. See also Companion Bill SF 3269.
Status: Introduced 3/23/16; referred to House Government Operations and Elections Policy. Committee amends to create an interim study; referred to Commerce & Regulatory Reform 4/4/16. Committee report Do Pass as amended and re-referred to Rules and Legislative Administration 4/7/2016. No further action during session. 

HF 3569 (Garofalo): A bill to cap transfers to the state Renewable Development Account.
Status: Introduced 3/24/16; referred to Job Growth and Energy Affordability. Committee hearing 4/4/16. Bill was included in House Omnibus bill, HF 3931.  Committee hearing set for April 18 and 19. See HF 2749. Language did not make final conference committee report for HF 2749.  No further action during session. 

HF 3570 (Garofalo): A bill regarding adjustments to rate-making for rate-regulated coops.  See also Companion Bill SF 3069.
Status: Introduced 3/24/16; referred to Job Growth and Energy Affordability. Bill was included in House Omnibus bill, HF 3931.  Committee hearing set for April 18 and 19. See HF 2749. Passed as part of HF 2749.  See HF 2749. See lines 123.8 to 123.13.  Conference Committee report finalized 5/22/16. Passed House (95-39) 5/22/16; Passed Senate (50-16) 5/22/16. Approved by Governor June 1, 2016. 

HF 3732 (R. Dehn): A bill to appropriate money to provide energy sector jobs initiative funding. See also Companion Bill SF 3454.
Status: Introduced 3/31/16; referred to Job Growth and Energy Affordability.

HF 3878 (P. Anderson, Hamilton): Tax credits for CHP development from 1MW to 26 MW size.
Status: Introduced 4/11/16; referred to Job Growth and Energy Affordability.

HF 3931 (Garafalo): A bill regarding economic development, labor, housing finance, MPUC funding, and utility policy.  Omnibus Economic Development/Energy bill.
Status: Introduced 4/15/16; referred to Job Growth and Energy Affordability.  Hearing set April 18 and 19. Amended and passed (11-6); referred to Ways and Means 4/20/16.  Committee amended and passed (4/21/16).  Second reading on House floor 4/21/16. Set to be debated on House floor 3/27/16. This bill has now become a vehicle for Senate tax policy. The energy policy is going forward as part of HF 2749. SF 2749 was approved by the Governor June 1, 2016. 

HF 3968 (O’Neill): A bill to prohibit solar system installation when the installation requires cutting down 75% or more of the trees standing in an area of over 3 acres.
Status: Introduced 4/25/16; referred to Job Growth and Energy Affordability.

HF 4029 (Hortman): A bill to require that IRPs include an assessment to replace existing fossil fuel generation facilities with renewable generation.
Status: Introduced 5/22/16; referred to Job Growth and Energy Affordability.

 

 

2016 Senate Bill Introductions

SF 877 (Sparks): Pertaining to fees paid by utilities for right of way crossing of railroads. See also companion bill HF 963.
Status:  Introduced 2/16/15; referred to Transportation & Public Safety. Set for hearing 3/16/15. Committee reports Do Pass as amended; referred to Environment & Energy 3/18/15. Included in Transportation Omnibus Bill (Dibble) (SF 1647). Second reading on Senate floor 4/7/15. Taken off floor and referred to Finance 4/20/15.  Committee recommends Do Pass as amended 4/23/15.  Second reading 4/23/15.  Third reading and passed (42-20) 4/27/15.  Received by House and compared to companion bill HF 1733 4/28/15.  Bills not identical, senate bill substituted for house bill on House General Register; second reading 4/29/15. Language not included in SF 1647 final passage in 2015. Returned to Environment and Energy committee. Committee reports Do Pass and referred to Finance 3/21/16. Committee reports Do Pass 4/21/16.  Second reading on Senate floor 4/21/16. Passed Senate (62-0) as amended 5/19/16. House substituted SF 877 for HF 963 on calendar.  House passed SF 877 as amended (126-1) 5/22/16.  Senate concurred with House amendments (65-0) 5/22/16. Approved by Governor May 31, 2016. 

SF 2363 (Tomassoni): A bill to clarify which costs are reimbursable under the reduction of the biomass mandate .  See also Companion Bill HF 2869
Status: Introduced 3/8/16; referred to Environment & Energy. Set for hearing 3/24/16. Committee reports Do Pass. Sent to floor; second reading 3/24/16. See SF 3131, section 1. SF 3131 has passed the Senate (59-0) and is pending on the House floor. SF 3131 passed the House (89-40) with the language of SF 2363 on 5/20/16.  Approved by Governor 5/22/16.   

SF 2405 (Marty): A bill to establish an Electric Vehicle program including rebates and incentives. See also Companion Bill HF 3513.
Status: Introduced 3/8/16; referred to Environment & Energy. Amended and committee recommends Do Pass 3/17/16; referred to Finance Committee. Referred to Finance-Natural Resources, Economic Development and Agricultural Budget Division 4/1/16. Referred to Environment and Energy Budget Division 4/6/16.  Division recommends Do Pass; referred to full Finance Committee 4/12/16. Committee reports Do Pass as amended 4/21/16.  Second reading on Senate floor 4/21/16. Passed Senate (41-19) 5/10/16.  Referred to House Job Growth and Energy Affordability committee 5/11/16. No further action during session. 

SF 2612 (Benson): A bill to limit net metering in municipal on cooperative service territories to 2% of retail sales.  See also Companion Bill HF 2544.
Status: Introduced 3/14/16; referred to Environment & Energy.

SF 2649 (Carlson): Making damage to energy or telecommunications transmission equipment a crime. See also Companion Bill HF 3082.
Status: Introduced 3/14/16; referred to Judiciary. Heard in committee 3/17/16; laid over. Set for hearing 4/5/16. Committee reports Do Pass as amended; second reading on Senate floor 4/6/16. Passed Senate (57-0) 5/12/16; referred to House floor and held for comparison to companion bill HF 3082. SF 2649 substituted on House floor for identical House bill HF 3082. SF 2649 placed on House Calendar for May 19. Passed House (114-18) 5/19/16.  Approved by Governor 5/22/16.   

SF 2688 (Schmit): Appropriation funds for promotion of clean energy resources. See also Companion Bill HF 3071.
Status: Introduced 3/14/16; referred to Finance. 

SF 2833 (Eken): A bill to allow revision of CIP goals for municipals and cooperatives; repeal of the 1 percent threshold for infrastructure efficiency counting towards CIP compliance. See also Companion Bill HF 2486. 
Status: Introduced 3/17/16; referred to Environment & Energy. Language allowing municipals and cooperatives to count infrastructure-side savings passed as part of HF 2749See HF 2749, Lines 124.2 to 124.17.  Conference Committee report finalized 5/22/16.  Passed House (95-39) 5/22/16; Passed Senate (50-16) 5/22/16. Approved by Governor June 1, 2016. 

SF 2972 (Tomassoni): A bill to allocate Clean Power Plan emission allocations to cities whose employment was impacted by the closure of a coal plant. See also Companion Bill HF 2817.
Status: Introduced 3/21/16; referred to Environment and Energy.

SF 2989 (Marty): A bill to revise the energy assurance and emergency conservation plan, the petroleum end user program and energy auditor standards, and solar siting.  See also Companion bill HF 3315.
Status: Introduced 3/21/16; referred to Environment and Energy. Set for hearing 3/29/16. Committee reports Do Pass; referred to State & Local Government 3/30/16. Committee reports Do Pass as amended 4/4/16. Second reading on Senate floor 4/4/16. No further action during session. 

SF 3052 (Hoffman): Emission rate rider for energy projects, including costs for replacing a coal facility with a natural gas facility. See also Companion bill HF 2823.
Status: Introduced 3/21/16; referred to Environment and Energy.

SF 3069 (Carlson): Allowing a rate-regulated cooperative an alternate rate structure process for a new rate schedule or for customer charges. See also Companion Bill HF 3570.
Status:  Introduced 3/21/16; referred to Environment and Energy. HF 3570:  Passed as part of HF 2749See HF 2749. See lines 123.8 to 123.13.  Conference Committee report finalized 5/22/16.  Passed House (95-39) 5/22/16; Passed Senate (50-16) 5/22/16. Approved by Governor June 1, 2016. 

SF 3089 (Schmit): To establish an MPUC ombudsperson to intervene on DG cases.
Status: Introduced 3/21/16; referred to Environment and Energy.  

SF 3191 (Benson):  A bill to require state legislative approval of state plan under EPA Clean Power Plan.
Status:  Introduced 3/24/16; referred to Environment & Energy.

SF 3269 (Sparks): A bill to prohibit charging fees to or otherwise regulating pole attachments for small wireless facilities. See also Companion Bill HF 3554.
Status: Introduced 3/29/16; referred to Jobs, Agriculture and Rural Development.  

SF 3286 (Benson):  A bill to require oversight of third parties marketing community solar including verification of expected generation and subscriber costs.  See also Companion Bill HF 3074.
Status:
 Introduced 3/29/16; referred to Environment and Energy.

SF 3413 (Gazelka): A bill to require a hearing and reverse referendum on public utility licensing or franchise fees for revenue raising. See also Companion Bill HF 3470.
Status: Introduced 4/1/16; referred to Environment and Energy.

SF 3533 (Marty):  A bill to assess utilities and creating a special fund for MPUC supplemental needs and appropriations.
Status: 
Introduced 4/14/16; referred to Finance.

SF 3608 (Housley): Creation of a solar investment tax credit and a Community Solar Garden tax credit. 
Status: Introduced 5/9/16; referred to Taxes.

SF 3625 (Dziedzic): A bill to establish a Green roof task force.
Status: Introduced 5/17/16; referred to Environment and Energy. 

SF 3635 (Dahle, Marty): A bill to require that IRPs include an assessment to replace existing fossil fuel generation facilities with renewable generation.
Status: Introduced 5/21/16; referred to Environment and Energy.