The Environment and Natural Resources Trust Fund (ENRTF) was established following voter approval of a constitutional amendment in 1988. The money in the Trust Fund is generated by the Minnesota State Lottery. The Trust Fund holds assets that can be appropriated, "for the public purpose of protection, conservation, preservation, and enhancement of the state's air, water, land, fish, wildlife, and other natural resources." Since 1991, the ENRTF has provided approximately $700 million to over 1,700 projects around the state.
Who Administers this Fund?
The Legislative-Citizen Commission on Minnesota Resources (LCCMR)
The Legislative-Citizen Commission on Minnesota Resources (LCCMR) makes funding recommendations to the Minnesota Legislature for special environment and natural resource projects, primarily from the Environment and Natural Resources Trust Fund. The LCCMR is made up of 17 members: 5 Senators, 5 Representatives, 5 citizens appointed by the governor, 1 citizen appointed by the Senate, and 1 citizen appointed by the House.
Proposal & Funding Process
The process begins when the LCCMR issues a Request for Proposal (RFP) for selected funding priorities based on its 6-year strategic plan and ongoing information gathering activities, including expert-led issue seminars and visits to natural resource sites around the state. The LCCMR reviews, evaluates, and ranks all proposals submitted. A selection of the highest ranked proposals are invited to present before the LCCMR.
Based on the total dollars available, a subset of the proposals are chosen to recommend to the legislature. The funding recommendations go before the Minnesota House and Senate in the form of a bill, and upon passage the bill goes to the Governor to be signed into law. Funding becomes available to projects beginning July 1 of the next fiscal year.
The mission of the Trust Fund is to ensure a long-term secure source of funding for environmental and natural resource activities whose benefits are realized only over an extended period of time.
700+ Funded Projects Since 2010
Great River Greening
Critical Habitats for Moose
Restoring Native Mussels