LETTER: Legislators should fix raid on lottery dollars

To the Editor:

 

Many Minnesotans choose to live here because of our beautiful lakes, rivers, prairies and forests. That’s why we’ve voted across the state, again and again, to use lottery proceeds to protect our great outdoors. 

So as a former state senator representing Eagan from 1993-2002, and a Friends of the Mississippi River board member, it’s a mystery to me why our Legislature was willing to divert voter-approved Environmental Trust Fund dollars to other projects this year. These lottery funds weren’t intended to pay principal and interest on infrastructure bonding projects, and they have never been used in this way. Plus, this particular type of bonding is expensive and fiscally irresponsible. 

Our next legislative session is just around the corner and our legislators need to fix this. The Environmental Trust Fund should be used as Minnesotans’ intended and infrastructure projects should be funded through the state’s ordinary (and less expensive) bonding bill in 2019.

 

Deanna Wiener

Oakdale

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