ST. PAUL, Minn. (AP) — Gov. Mark Dayton has appointed eight people to a new committee to advise the Minnesota Pollution Control Agency.

Dayton created the panel by executive order last year after the Legislature abolished the MPCA Citizens’ Board, which had final authority over key permitting and environmental review decisions at the MPCA since the state agency was created in 1967.

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The new advisory committee has no formal powers, but Dayton said in a statement Tuesday that it will ensure citizen input into environmental regulatory decisions. Like the former Citizens’ Board, the committee will be chaired by the MPCA commissioner.

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The appointees include people from the health care, nonprofit, agricultural, industrial and government sectors. They’ll provide advice in four main areas: environmental reviews, permit applications, developing agency rules and requests for rule variances.

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