Class on Invasive Species Now Mandatory for More Minn. Businesses

Updated: 02/18/2014 5:31 PM By: Jennie Olson

Photo: Wikimedia Commons
Photo: Wikimedia Commons

A new effort is under way to crack down on the spread of invasive species in Minnesota.

Part of the change requires businesses – like resorts and outfitters that rent boats and other water-related equipment – to attend aquatic invasive species training and acquire a permit.

The training will help people learn about the threat of zebra mussels and other invasive species and how to prevent their spread.

The state law requiring the training took effect last July; before the change, the law applied only to businesses like marinas, dock haulers and others hired to install or remove equipment from state waters.

The first training session took place Tuesday in Brainerd and was one of 17 classes planned around the state. The sessions are free, but businesses will now have to pay an additional fee for a permit, which costs $50 and must be renewed every three years to comply with Minnesota law.

The DNR says early classes will give businesses time to attend training and get a permit before ice out.