How does the process of a municipal utility ballot initiative work?

A:

Municipalization is a process laid out by Minnesota State law. First, the City Council must vote on a resolution to put a ballot initiative in front of voters to authorize formation of a municipal power utility to the Public Utilities Commission. This has to be done no less than 60 days before election day. If such a referendum passes then the city will be authorized but not required to purchase the electric and/or gas utility infrastructure. The city will also gain standing in front of the State Public Utilities Commission to conduct a feasibility study on whether a city can purchase and operate the utility infrastructure as cheaply, reliably and more cleanly than the current utilities. Acquisition would go forward if the City can prove that it can deliver energy as cheaply and reliably as the existing utilities while achieving its renewable energy and efficiency goals. 

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