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Minnesota Ag News Headlines
Tell MPCA How to Spend VW Settlement Money
Minnesota Ag Connection - 02/16/2017

Minnesota will receive up to $47 million over the next 10 years from the national Volkswagen Mitigation Settlement. This money is to be used for projects to offset the excess pollution caused by VW vehicles sold in Minnesota that the company illegally modified to get around required emission limits. The settlement lists 10 specific categories of mitigation projects. (For more information, see https://www.pca.state.mn.us/air/volkswagen-settlement.) Since many areas of concern for environmental justice are impacted by diesel emissions, overburdened communities stand to gain from actions taken as part of the settlement.

The Minnesota Pollution Control is holding a series of public meetings to discuss the mitigation settlement and gather input on how Minnesota should spend the settlement money. While the projects must fit the specified categories, there's room for flexibility on how to best meet Minnesota's needs.

Public meetings scheduled at this point:

- Feb 23, 1-2:30 pm, MPCA central office, 525 Lafayette Road, St. Paul

- March 6, 6:30-8 pm, Plymouth Congregational Church (Jackman Room), 1900 Nicollet Ave, Minneapolis

- March 15, 6:30-8 pm, MPCA Brainerd office, 7678 College Road, Baxter

There may be additional public meetings as the project moves forward. MPCA will accept public comments regarding the VW settlement until March 31. All comments will be reviewed and used to help shape Minnesota's Beneficiary Mitigation Plan, which will describe to the federal trustee how the state plans to use the money. If you have any comments you would like us to consider, please e-mail them to vwsettlement.pca@state.mn.us.

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