Letter: Yes vote urged on state amendment
The word that stands out to me in the Clean Water, Land & Legacy Amendment is legacy. Like my parents and grandparents, I have always been proud of being a Minnesotan. The wonder of Minnesota is recognized by many. Minnesota has been recogniz...
The word that stands out to me in the Clean Water, Land & Legacy Amendment is legacy. Like my parents and grandparents, I have always been proud of being a Minnesotan. The wonder of Minnesota is recognized by many. Minnesota has been recognized as one of the healthiest states with the lowest premature death rate, third-lowest infant mortality rate, and we are second in life expectancy. Ninety-one percent of Minnesotans have health insurance. We are recognized as having one of the most educated and civic-minded populations. We are volunteers. Our workforce is second to none.
Minnesota offers tremendous ecological diversity from the prairies of the west, the beautiful eastern deciduous forests, the central transitional forests, to the boreal forests of the north. Our 10,000 public lakes, the great rivers, national and state forests, parks, and numerous other public lands and waters provide for all of us the opportunity to enjoy and benefit from the great outdoors of Minnesota.
There is only so much money, but the simple fact is that funding for our natural resources has not kept pace with other worthwhile causes. It is not even close. The legislature has repeatedly failed to adequately fund the protection and enhancement of our land and water resources. It has been suggested that this legislative inaction reflects citizen satisfaction with the status quo. I don't believe that, and I do believe that the citizens of Minnesota are ready to help protect and enhance our natural resources. The legislative failure is due to the lack of political will.
It is up to us to ensure that there is adequate funding to protect and enhance the quality of our lakes, wetlands, rivers, forests, prairies, and other public lands and waters. Yes, this will cost us some money. When I make a $50 taxable purchase, it will cost an extra 19 cents, to protect and enhance for myself and my children, some of Minnesota's most valuable resources. The cost-benefit analysis seems very reasonable.
This is now grass-roots politics at its best. It is your decision; your legacy. Whether you are Republican, Democratic, Independent or other, the words of Robert Kennedy seem appropriate. "The future is not a gift; it is an achievement." This amendment will be a great achievement.