Major state budget bills begin coming up for debate and floor votes today at the Minnesota Legislature. The Senate will take up (noon start) an agriculture/rural development/housing bill, plus an environmental program funding measure. In the House (9am start), lawmakers debate an E-12 education funding bill — the largest segment of the state budget — plus a jobs-and-energy measure.
The House energy bill embraces Governor Tim Walz’s goal of having Minnesota 100-percent carbon-free by 2050 — something Minneapolis Democrat Jean Wagenius says is *not* in the Republican-controlled Senate’s version. Wagenius adds, “In the House bill we spend all the Renewable Development Fund on renewable energy, and that’s not a choice they’ve made [in the Senate]. So we’ll have lots of discussions there.”
Minneapolis Democrat Jamie Long says the price of wind is now cheaper than another other energy source in Minnesota. “That is going to make moving to clean energy all the more appealing to Minnesotans, ’cause not only is it going to be better for our air and health and climate, not only is it going to create jobs, but it’s also gonna be… helping Minnesotans save money,” Long says.