Since taking office, Governor Dayton has made streamlining environmental permitting a top priority, ensuring necessary safeguards for our environment while making permitting faster and more predictable for Minnesota businesses. Now, 96 percent of environmental permits for job creating projects meet the goal of being issued within 150 days, and many of those permits are issued much more quickly, in only a few days.
This week, the Dayton Administration announced new measures to redouble those efforts, establishing the goal of delivering some permits within 90 days or less. Speaking last night to the Minnesota Chamber of Commerce on behalf of Governor Dayton, Chief of Staff Tina Flint Smith announced the new improvements.
"Governor Dayton has directed both the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources and the Minnesota Pollution Control Agency to issue or deny permits within 90 days or 150 days, depending on the nature and complexity of the permit," said Smith. "This new measure of efficiency will be good for business, good for our environment, and just plain good government."
"Reaching these goals won't be easy; but they are reasonable and necessary," she said. "We cannot allow unnecessary delays to adversely impact Minnesota's business environment; and we will not sacrifice the protection of our environment for the sake of efficiency. This new measure will prudently balance both of these important responsibilities."
Ninety-day permits will typically be issued for activities such as construction storm water projects, which are relatively easy to expedite. The 150-day permit window will be designated for more complex permits such as those issued to a mid-size manufacturer or an ethanol producer, permits which require more back-and-forth information exchanges between the applicant and the regulating agency.