State Sen. Ellen Anderson, DFL-St. Paul, voiced disappointment about being passed over in her bid to be reappointed to the Minnesota Legislative-Citizens Commission on Minnesota Resources (LCCMR). Anderson, a key player on environment and energy issues when DFLers controlled the Senate, said she got “dumped” from the panel that recommends environmental projects that are spent with Minnesota Lottery dollars.
Anderson has been on the LCCMR for 10 years and would have been the senior member on the panel. She said she wanted Senate Majority Leader Amy Koch, R-Buffalo, to reappoint her.
“I would say the direction I’ve been taking has been clean energy and clean water, and I guess she wants to go in a different direction,” Anderson told PIM.
The Senate Rules and Administration Committee approved the LCCMR slate unanimously by a voice vote that included Senate Minority Leader Tom Bakk, DFL-Cook. Sen. Linda Higgins, DFL-Minneapolis, will serve on the LCCMR in Anderson’s place.
Koch explained that it was time for new representation on the council that recommends Lottery dollars for a wide variety of environmental purposes like education, research and land acquisition.
“I’m also looking, quite frankly, for a little new blood on some of these committees. Senator Anderson has served ably on the committee for at least 10 years. …I think Minnesotans expressed they’d like some new eyes with their vote this last November. I felt a bit of duty to do that all around,” Koch said during the hearing.
Koch said that Higgins brings a “fresh perspective.”
Bakk explained during the hearing that Higgins had initially been named to the LCCMR because she was the ranking DFLer on the Senate Environment and Natural Resources Committee. Higgins told Bakk before the hearing she wanted to redraw. Bakk resubmitted Anderson’s name, he said.
“I just want to make it clear it was not my recommendation that Senator Higgins be put on, that my recommendation was Senator Anderson,” Bakk said.