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ST. PAUL, MN -- Rep. Cal Bahr (R-East Bethel) joined more than three dozen legislators urging Governor Mark Dayton to instruct the Minnesota Department of Commerce and the Public Utilities Commission to move forward with the proposed Enbridge Line 3 Replacement project. The aging pipeline was ordered replaced by the federal government during the Obama administration, and has been subject to unprecedented public review and comment. The letter notes that the Minnesota Department of Commerce and Public Utilities Commission have consistently exceeded statutory and regulatory timeframes which has added unnecessary delays to the critical project.
“Enbridge has successfully cut through the necessary red tape regulations for the Line 3 Replacement Project to move forward; it’s time that the Governor step out of the way,” said Bahr. “The completion of this project will help provide greater tax revenue for many local communities across northern Minnesota, as well as provide good paying jobs. I also authored a bill this session, which I will continue to support next session, aimed at reducing burdensome regulations by eliminating the requirement to obtain a certificate of need prior to constructing a pipeline transporting oil or natural gas.”
Replacement of the Line 3 pipeline will mean more than $3 billion in private investment and create thousands of good-paying jobs along the route. The letter also raised concerns over the risk to the environment if the line is not replaced.
With the Environmental Impact Statement now complete, the project has now cleared all relevant procedural hurdles including the Minnesota Environmental Policy Act (MEPA). A final decision, to be made by the Minnesota Public Utilities Commissioner, is expected next spring.