A bill recently introduced in Minnesota would nullify federal Environmental Protection Agency regulation and overreach within the state.

HF3094, introduced by Representative Mary Franson, is Minnesota’s latest reaction toward federal encroachment of state and local authority.

The bill’s text indicates:

“The legislature declares that the regulation authority of the United States Environmental Protection Agency is not authorized by the Constitution of the United States and violates the true meaning and intent as given by the founders and ratifiers, and is hereby declared to be invalid in the state, shall not be recognized by the state, is specifically rejected by the state, and shall be considered null and void and of no force and effect in the state.”

Invoking explicit language from Thomas Jefferson’s Kentucky Resolutions of 1798, this reprimand against federal regulatory power would be a strong catalyst for liberty in the state.

The bill also requires the state legislature to take all steps necessary to block EPA enforcement of its rules.

“The legislature shall adopt and enact any and all measures as may be necessary to prevent the enforcement of regulations issued by the United States Environmental Protection Agency that are not specifically authorized by the Congress of the United States or specifically adopted by the legislature of the state of Minnesota.”

Franson described the bill as one which would reiterate Minnesota’s ability to utilize its own authority and reject Washington’s:

“Our constituents here on the local level get frustrated when Washington dictates what we do here. It’s a gesture to the public and to the EPA. Washington doesn’t understand our way of life.“

By passing this bill, Minnesota would join efforts by Oklahoma, Idaho, and Arizona to stand by the principles James Madison encouraged in The Federalist #46. Madison urged for the states to “present obstructions which the federal government would hardly be willing to encounter” during times of unauthorized extension of federal power.

Just days ago, the Arizona Senate approved a resolution rebuking the EPA and calling upon the legislature to nullify its unconstitutional activities within the state.

Minnesota’s bill has been referred to the Committee on Environment and Natural Resources Policy, where it will be debated.

Minnesota would be wise to pursue the pathway of federalism and reject the corridor to federal usurpation. By passing this bill, Minnesota would abide by the principles inherent to in the Constitution of the United States and accomplish both.

Dave Benner