Johnson’s line is insurance, and that has placed him smack in the center of Minnesota’s climate change debate
The growing pressure to reduce carbon emissions is refiguring energy politics from the global down to the local level — a development partially reflected in the energy bill that passed the Minnesota Legislature this year.
As part of this year’s omnibus energy bill, state lawmakers passed into law the goal of transitioning the state to a renewable energy economy that doesn’t use of a drop of gasoline or a lump of coal to power itself. A House-Senate panel is now trying to figure out a framework to achieve the goal.
State lawmakers on Monday sent a campaign finance bill to Gov. Mark Dayton that allows candidates to raise and spend more money. The bill received bipartisan support in the House and Senate but also drew dissent from DFLers in the majority on some provisions.
On the afternoon that the House cast its historic vote in favor of gay marriage — completely monopolizing attention at the Capitol — the Senate quietly debated a bill overhauling the state’s campaign finance rules. Most notably, the bill would significantly increase caps on spending and contributions for political campaigns.
While the public’s eyes were glued this week to the passage and signing of the gay marriage bill, most lobbyists were camped out in the Capitol well into the night tracking — or awaiting — the deliberations of numerous conference committees.
The Senate passed its omnibus energy bill on Friday 37-26. The bill is a pared-down version of this session’s push by environmental groups to establish a solar mandate.
The Senate passed legislation increasing campaign spending and contribution limits. The House is yet to take up companion legislation on the floor by a 36-28 vote on Thursday.
by Charley Shaw
Published: May 3, 2013
Tags: Ben Gerber, David Tomassoni, Earth Day, Jeanne Poppe, John Marty, Mark Dayton, Melissa Hortman, Minnesota Division of Energy Resources, Minnesota Environmental Partnership, Minnesota House of Representatives, Minnesota Senate, paper mills, Renewable Energy Development Fund, solar energy, Steve Morse, taconite, Xcel Energy
After 10 days of limbo and behind-the-scenes talks at the state Capitol, legislation to boost the state’s solar power industry has passed out of House and Senate committees.
Renewable energy advocates on Monday afternoon rallied in the state Capitol rotunda in support of energy policy legislation that seeks to boost solar energy in Minnesota. Gov. Mark Dayton and House Speaker Paul Thissen were among the officials who rallied a couple hundred activists to support bills in the House and Senate that would call for utilities to generate 4 percent of their electricity from solar energy by 2030.