Updated: 03/18/2014 10:33 PM
Created: 03/18/2014 3:13 PM WDIO.com
By: Renee Passal
A decision last week from the federal Environmental Protection Agency, about a variance for Mesabi Nugget, has prompted new legislation at the state capitol.
House File 3094 asks for the regulation authority of the EPA to be declared invalid in the state, and the legislature shall adopt measures to prevent the enforcement of regulations.
Representative David Dill acknowledged this is mostly symbolic. "This is a bill of frustration. We've had an on-going problem with permitting, over things that have been done for over 100 years. It's just frustration and I don't expect the bill to pass."
He, along with Tom Anzelc and Jason Metsa, have signed on to the bill, which was introduced on Monday. Three Republicans have also signed on, from other parts of Minnesota.
Local Sierra Club member John Doberstein said it's disappointing to see the bill introduced, even if it's not going to go anywhere.
"It seems to me to be a gesture to the mining industry and the corporate polluters. I just don't know why they'd think they can pick and choose the federal laws that we can accept?" he said.
The decision from the EPA last week says they are going to reverse their approval of a variance for Mesabi Nugget. The variance allows the plant in Hoyt Lakes to discharge four pollutants higher than Minnesota standards allow for.
The agency was sued by environmental groups and two Chippewa Bands, for granting the variance. Now the agency is reversing course, although Mesabi Nugget plans on asking for a delay in the decision. A hearing is coming up next month in Duluth.
Dill said that the bill isn't making any of the committee deadlines, and is essentially dead in the water.
Dayton, Johnson show fire in final governor debate
Democratic Gov. Mark Dayton and Republican nominee Jeff Johnson ended their series of debates Friday much like they began, with the incumbent hailing big-picture successes and his rival saying too many things went awry over the past four years.
Fire Danger Expected to Increase in Minnesota
Dry conditions are expected to increase the danger of wildfires in Minnesota this weekend.
Reinert 'Strongly Considering' Running for Duluth Mayor
When Duluth Mayor Don Ness announced earlier this month that he would not seek re-election, many people were surprised. On Friday, Sen. Roger Reinert said he is strongly considering entering the race.
Three Attempted Murder Charges Filed Against Woman in Douglas Co. Shootout
Twenty two-year old Jessica Gehl of Lake Nebagamon was charged with three counts of attempted first degree intentional murder Friday after she allegedly pulled a gun on her mother and then opened fire on authorities Wednesday. Gehl was also charged with first-degree recklessly endangering safety.
Charge Against Woman in Arrest Video Dismissed
A judge has dismissed a charge against a woman seen in a video of a controversial Superior arrest. At a hearing Friday, Judge Kelly Thimm approved a motion to dismiss a misdemeanor disorderly conduct charge against Natasha Lancour.