This week Second Judicial District Chief Judge John Guthmann issued a ruling striking down Gov. Mark Dayton’s attempt to strip the Legislature of its funding. Judge Guthmann described the governor’s action as, “… the Governor’s line-time veto of the Legislature’s appropriations offended the Separation of Powers clause of the Minnesota Constitution. They are null and void.”
Click here for the full text of the judge’s decision.
Unfortunately, the governor intends to appeal. By court order, the legislative branch currently is funded through Oct. 1. If the appeal process is not complete by then, Minnesota will face another constitutional crisis with the voice of the people again being eliminated by the governor’s action.
I believe despite the governor’s decision to unnecessarily prolong this dispute, our judicial system will ultimately not allow him to silence the voice of the people.
The United States Forest Service and Bureau of Land Management will hold a public meeting 5 to 7:30 p.m. July 25 at the Virginia High School Auditorium to gather public input on the USFS’s proposed withdrawal of mineral leases on more than one-quarter of a million acres of federal lands in the Rainy River Watershed.
This is a very disappointing move that has major long-term ramifications for the ability of our state school trust lands to generate mineral lease revenue for our public schools.
The federal lands are mixed in with thousands of acres of state, county and private lands with important mineral deposits on them. Recently I wrote a column on this matter, which was published in some area newspapers. Please click here for the full text of that column.
On other matters, $1.2 million in grant funding is now available to improve firearms ranges. The DNR is handling the grant process and a local match is required. September 1 is the deadline to apply. More info is available by clicking here, by calling 612-756-4165 or by emailing at email@example.com.
Also a reminder that July 31 is the deadline for Border-to-Border Broadband grant applicants to complete pre-application notification by contacting – in writing – all of the existing wireline providers in their proposed grant project areas and alerting them that a potential application may be filed. More information is available here.
Please be safe as we enjoy the weekend.