State to launch website to track Legacy fundingby Elizabeth Dunbar, Minnesota Public Radio
St. Paul, Minn. — A new website being launched early next month will give Minnesotans a chance to see how sales tax money from the Clean Water, Land and Legacy Amendment is being spent.
Voters approved the constitutional amendment in 2008 to dedicate three-eighths of a cent on every dollar to projects around the state.
"Minnesotans approved the Legacy Amendment a couple of years ago to increase their sales tax, and they'll want to know how that money is being spent," said Greg Hubinger, director of the Legislative Coordinating Commission, which is in charge of the website.
The Legislature decided in 2009 that a website should be set up to improve transparency in the funding process and ensure that money was being spent as voters intended.
While the commission is designing and administering the website, it relies on information from the agencies that oversee various Legacy funds. Hubinger said that means the site will be a work in progress.
In addition to Legacy projects, the website will track Environmental Trust Fund projects that use lottery proceeds. The new site will have general information about the funds and how citizens can apply for funds. People will also be able to track a project's progress, he said.
"A citizen will be able to find projects essentially in their own backyard, or by fund or by topic areas that they're interested in," Hubinger said.
The Legacy Amendment funds projects for the outdoors, lakes and rivers, parks and trails and arts and culture.