Letter to Editor: Green, Utke blocking clean water efforts


People I meet ask me, "What's going on in Park Rapids? I thought you guys loved clean water?" I tell them we do. We just made a mistake by electing people who don't care.

The question is, why are our legislative District 2B Rep. Steve Green and our District 2 Sen. Paul Utke the exceptions to this love of clean water?

At issue is the Minnesota Department of Agriculture proposal of a Nitrogen Fertilizer Rule. This rule is intended to reduce the amount of nitrogen fertilizer entering our lakes and drinking water aquifers. According to the Minnesota Department of Health, 40 percent of Minnesota's waters don't meet basic health standards for drinking, swimming or fishing; 537 public water supply wells across the state have elevated nitrate levels (this includes Park Rapids and it cost the city thousands of dollars to correct the problem) and about 10 percent of private wells in vulnerable areas already exceed the health limits. Does this sound like the Minnesota we all love?

However, Green and Utke are proposing legislation which would block attempts to maintain safe and clean water. They are sponsoring the following bills which support continued pollution: HF 2727, which prohibits the adoption of the Nitrogen Fertilizer Rule; HF 2748, which blocks adoption of portions of the rule, and HF2448, which exempts certain parcels of land from rules.

I am totally bewildered by these two leaders. For whom are they working?