As a member of a 16-person task force charged with devising a long-term funding solution for clean water initiatives, Sigford helped develop the so-called "Flush Tax" plan. The proposal, which would have generated $80 to $100 million a year by imposing user fees on septic and sewer hookups, was the product of a hard fought compromise between environmental, farm, and business interests. Three years later, Sigford notes, it has yet to be adopted. She's not sure why. "Either because of her [Corrigan's] efforts or because she didn't have the governor's ear, we still have a lot of work to be done," Sigford says. "I hope that will be prominent in the mind of the next commissioner."
For his part, State Senator Marty has another hope for Corrigan's successor: that he or she not come to the job from the other side of the table. "There are probably 4.9 million people in Minnesota who don't work for a regulated industry," Marty says. "You'd think the governor could pick someone from that group."