Three energy-related projects have been recommended for bonding: an energy efficiency program for municipal buildings; a waste-to-energy facility in Hutchinson; and a steam pipeline for the Rochester Community and Technical College.
On Feb. 18, the House Energy Finance and Policy Division approved HF1392, which contains its bonding recommendations for 2008. Sponsored by Division Chairman Rep. Bill Hilty (DFL-Finlayson), it now goes to the House Finance Committee.
The three initiatives included in the recommendations are organized by level of priority. On the top of the list, with the highest priority, is a $10 million request for the Department of Commerce for “green bonds” — grants to municipalities to improve the energy efficiency of public buildings. This comes from a bill (HF1951) sponsored by Rep. Kate Knuth (DFL-New Brighton). A companion bill, SF2358, sponsored by Sen. D. Scott Dibble (DFL-Mpls), awaits action by the Senate Finance Committee.
Second on the list with a “medium” level of priority is a high tech power plant that would turn solid waste into a source of energy. A $2.5 million appropriation would fund a plasma arc demonstration facility, to be located in Hutchinson. This comes from a bill (HF167) sponsored by Rep. Paul Thissen (DFL-Mpls). A companion bill, SF171, sponsored by Sen. Dan Larson (DFL-Bloomington), awaits action by the Senate Business, Industry and Jobs Committee.
The third item on the list, designated a “low” priority, is a $6 million appropriation for the design and construction of a steam pipeline from an Olmsted County waste-to-energy facility to the Rochester Community and Technical College campus. It would supply the college with steam heat and cooling. This comes from HF2776, sponsored by Rep. Kim Norton (DFL-Rochester). A companion bill, SF2658, sponsored by Senate Minority Leader David Senjem (R-Rochester), awaits action by the Senate Finance Committee.
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