Sustainable Stillwater MN values civic engagement and believe it’s our duty to inform you about the status of legislation that could directly affect our environment and our ability to fight the worst effects of climate change.
Stillwater’s state legislators from Minnesota Senate and House District 39 are Senator Karin Housley (R-39), House Rep. Bob Dettmer (R-39A), and House Rep. Shelly Christensen (D-39B). So how did they do? Here is the voting record on some of the bills. (Data from
1. Energy Efficiency with the ECO Act of 2021 (HF 164): In the Senate, Senator Housley voted YES. In the House, Rep. Christensen voted YES and Rep. Dettmer voted NO. A “YES” vote means Minnesota's existing energy efficiency programs are enhanced to support new technologies and consumer choices while providing more jobs in the energy efficiency sector. The measure passed in both houses.
2. House Commerce & Energy Omnibus Bill (SF 972): Rep. Christensen voted YES. Rep. Dettmer voted NO. A "YES" vote makes progress toward limiting Minnesota's greenhouse gas emissions and transitioning to a clean energy future. The House voted YES.
3. Establish Carbon-Free Utility Standards (Amendment 36 to SF 972): Sen. Housley voted NO. A "NO" vote meant guidelines were not put in place for Minnesota to generate carbon-free energy by 2040. No guidelines were put in place to address pollution in areas of environmental justice or wages of workers in the energy sector. Senate voted NO.
4. Clean Energy First (Amendment 34 to SF 972): Sen. Housley voted NO. A "NO" vote means Clean Energy First was not included within SF 972, maintaining a system through which new fossil fuel-based electric plants can be permitted instead of cleaner technologies. Senate voted NO.
5. Human Activity is Causing Climate Change (Amendment 27 to SF 972): Sen. Housley voted NO. A "NO" vote refuses to acknowledge that human-created greenhouse gas emissions are the leading cause of climate change. Senate voted NO.
6. Banning New Nuclear Power Plants, Amendment 15 to SF 972: Sen. Housley voted NO. A "NO" vote would end a nuclear energy moratorium. This provision would allow the construction of new nuclear energy facilities in the state. The Senate voted NO - not to ban them.
7. Greenhouse Gas Reduction Goals (Amendment 31 to SF 972): Sen. Housley voted NO. A "NO" vote means improved greenhouse gas reduction goals were not included in SF 972. Senate voted NO.
8. Clean Energy Investments with RDA Funding (HF 1842): Rep. Christensen voted YES, Rep. Dettmer voted NO. A "YES" vote means funds from the Renewable Development account are allocated to four clean energy projects. The House vote YES.
9. Energy Efficiency ECO Act (HF 4502): Rep. Christensen voted YES, Rep. Dettmer voted NO. A "YES" vote means Minnesota's existing energy efficiency programs would be enhanced to support new technologies and consumer choices while providing more jobs in the energy efficiency sector. The House voted YES.
10. Energy & Jobs Omnibus Bill (HF 2208): Rep. Christensen voted YES. Rep. Dettmer voted NO. A “YES” vote supported clean energy-related policies. The House passed legislation to put the state on a path to 100% carbon-free electricity by the year 2050. The bill also significantly expanded rebates for electric vehicle purchases, created a revolving loan program for electric vehicle charging stations, and created a new program called “Solar on Schools” so that public school buildings could benefit from solar generation. The House voted YES.
11. Climate Resiliency, A46 (SF 959): Sen. Housley voted NO on this amendment to fund $880,000 to establish and implement a climate resiliency program, and give assistance and grants to local governments and tribes.
In short, Rep. Shelly Christensen voted consistently in favor of climate, environment, and clean energy legislation. She voted YES on the Commerce and Energy Omnibus Bill, HF6, which takes steps toward securing Minnesota’s transition to clean energy; she voted YES to allow the MPCA (Minnesota Pollution Control Agency) to create its Clean Cars Minnesota rule that will lead to more EVs available to Minnesotans and less air pollution; YES on House SF 972 which makes progress toward limiting Minnesota's greenhouse gas emissions and transitioning to a clean energy future.
She also voted YES on the Energy Efficiency with the ECO Act of 2021, HF 164,
that allows Minnesota's existing energy efficiency programs to be enhanced to
support new technologies and consumer choices while providing more jobs in the
energy efficiency sector.
Rep. Dettmer and Sen. Housley voted against most climate and clean energy
We reached out to all three legislators for comment on their voting records. Rep.
Christensen responded, saying: “Our changing climate is affecting Minnesota in
catastrophic ways. It is our job to work together to safeguard the environment, public health, and our economy with immediate actions that will reduce greenhouse gas emissions and help communities adapt so future generations can enjoy and thrive in Minnesota (and the world!) that we all love.”
Karin Housley’s legislative assistant told us Senator Housley did not wish to
comment. Sen. Bob Dettmer did not respond.
Let your legislators know what you think. Public input goes a long way to
influencing their decisions.
- Sustainable Stillwater Minnesota