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The Senate budget bill, which has passed the full Senate, does not include a fee increase.
(Published Apr 29, 2013)
The House has completed work on its environment and natural resources budget bill (HF 976, Rep. Jean Wagenius, DFL-Minneapolis). The package includes an increase to water appropriation fees by $6.1 million per year, down from an initial proposal that would have raised more than $7 million per year.
Based on 2010 water use data, the fee would generate an additional $2.15 million from water appropriation fees on municipal systems and an additional $1.45 million from summer water use surcharges. Agricultural irrigation and golf courses would see their rates increase by $725,000 and $425,000 respectively. The remaining $1.4 million would come from increases to various industrial permits.
Residential water use fees would be set at $15 per million gallons. The size of the system no longer changes the base fee. Non-agricultural irrigation is charged $70 per million gallons. Agricultural irrigation would be billed at $22 per million gallons, and other water uses will be charged $30 per million gallons. The summer surcharge rate paid on the difference between summer water use and January water use is set at $75 per million gallons. The proposal expands the summer surcharge window to include May and September in addition to the current June, July, and August time period.
The Senate budget bill (SF 1607, Sen. David Tomassoni, DFL-Chisholm) has passed in the Senate and does not include a fee increase. A conference committee is expected to start working on resolving differences between the two budget bills next week.
The proposal is meant to significantly increase annual funding to the Department of Natural Resources’ water management account for the following uses:
For more information, download these state documents:
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Contact Craig Johnson
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