Skip to main content Skip to office menu Skip to footer
Capital IconMinnesota Legislature

Legislative News and Views - Rep. Chris Swedzinski (R)

Back to profile

Swedzinski Opposes Bill Containing New Fees and Regulations on Farmers and Ag Processing

Thursday, April 18, 2013

ST. PAUL – Rep. Chris Swedzinski (R-Ghent) announced he plans to vote “no” on HF 976 when it comes to the floor of the Minnesota House for consideration this afternoon. Swedzinski issued the following statement in opposition to the bill, which faces criticism for its new regulations and fees on Minnesota’s farmers, cities, townships and agricultural processing operations:

“This bill adds a huge new cost to Minnesota’s farmers and ag processors that utilize irrigation systems, creating a trickle down of new costs on other parts of our rural economy and negatively impacting this critical industry. Water permit fees in HF 976 would more than double and be used to fund a century-long project of new groundwater test sites that hardworking taxpayers already pay for through watershed districts. Our cities and towns will pay more for this water fee, passing along increases to residents. It also raises the commercial animal waste technician fee, affecting even more farmers and businesses in our part of the state.

Furthermore, the bill spends more on wasteful projects than any other time in state history, including:

  • $300,000 for bee pollinator habitat restoration that is visible to the public, along state trails. Earmarks up to $50,000 of that money for pollinator habitat signage and public awareness.
  • $50,000 for pollinator habitat education and outreach efforts
  • $2,799,000 to the Environmental Quality Board to form an “advisory team” that could begin to eliminate the frac sand mining industry in Minnesota
  • $300,000 for new restrooms at a public water access on Crane Lake
  • $26,000 to advertise the availability of critical habitat license plates

I will continue to support efficient and effective government policies in St. Paul, and this legislation threatens that goal, as well as the health of our economy. It does not have my support.”

Representative Swedzinski can be reached by phone at (651) 296-5374. He can also be contacted via e-mail at, or via U.S. Mail at 251 State Office Building, St. Paul, MN 55155.