Our work to stop the bills that would weaken local control in Minnesota have had an impact. On March 20, the state Senate version of the bill that would weaken local control was scheduled to be heard on the Senate Floor. Shortly before the Senate went into session, bill proponents pulled it from the day’s agenda because they weren’t sure they had the votes.
This is good news, but the issue isn’t over. Knowing that it might not pass as an individual piece of legislation, proponents worked to get House File 330 included in the Jobs and Energy Omnibus Finance Bill. This omnibus bill will be on the House Floor this Thursday, April 6, and we need you to let your Representative know they should oppose it.
The language taken from House File 330 weakens local control for cities by requiring, in some cases, a 2/3 super majority to enact an interim ordinance. Currently, an interim ordinance can always be enacted by a simple majority—that’s how democratic rights should work. The interim ordinance allows a city to quickly enact a moratorium when unanticipated development is proposed that is of concern to the community. This is an emergency power that allows communities time to study the issue, review their zoning ordinances, and adopt new zoning controls if needed.
This issue was on the House Floor on March 2. When House File 330 was on the House Floor, there were two key votes. There was an amendment to take out the provision requiring a 2/3 majority, which failed, and then there was a vote on the overall bill, which passed.
Many Representatives didn’t get it quite right. Contact them now to make sure they vote right this time!