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State Representative Dennis Smith

375 State Office BuildingState Office Building
100 Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Blvd.
651-296-5502

For more information contact: George Damian

Posted: 2017-11-17
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Legislative Update

Amazing Comeback and the Supreme Court Punts


Friends, 


Last week, the Maple Grove Crimson Football team completed one of the greatest comebacks in high school football history. Down 27-10 late in the fourth quarter against St. Michael-Albertville in the state quarterfinals, Maple Grove recovered two onside kicks on their way to scoring 19 straight points. It garnered national attention and was a true testament to the never-quit attitude that exemplifies the best of high school sports. Last night, the Crimson ran up against a tough Eden Prairie team in the State Semifinals and lost, falling just short of the Championship game. It was a great season and that incredible comeback will not soon be forgotten. Way to go Crimson! 


Minnesota Supreme Court Punts

On Thursday the Minnesota Supreme Court declined to rule on the constitutional merits of Governor Dayton's veto of the legislature's funding. The Court stated they declined to rule due to the Legislature being able to continue operating until the 2018 Legislative Session convenes in February. This was a disappointing result as we represent your voice at the Capitol and believe the Court should have given a clear signal that this type of action by the current executive, or any future one from any party, is unacceptable. 

Due to this ruling the by Court, resources that are meant for the vital work done by non-partisan staff had to be reallocated to pay for ongoing operations of the entire legislature. This is only a short term fix and we will have to remedy this situation ASAP when we reconvene in February. This whole situation is especially disappointing due to the great bipartisan work we accomplished during the 2017 Session. 

The good news is that due to wise fiscal management with available funds, the Legislature will continue to be able to serve our constituents.

 

Town Hall Recap

Thank you to everyone from Maple Grove and Osseo who attended my town hall last week. I appreciate hearing your concerns and the thoughtful discussion. I look forward to the next one, which will be scheduled next week!

 

MNLARS and REAL ID

Last month's announcement that Minnesota received an extension to October 10, 2018 to start issuing REAL IDs was welcomed news. However, the issues that MNLARS, the system that the Department of Public Safety is using to issue IDs, tabs, etc., is putting even that date in jeopardy. Minnesota needs to at least have started issuing REAL IDs by that October 10, 2018 or we will need further extensions. I spoke with Tom Hauser of KSTP about this issue for his "At Issue" program. You can view the entire episode here. I also have a clip from the program here on my Facebook Page

Problems have persisted, including problems highlighted by KSTP at the Maple Grove center. And then later in the week a state-wide outage was reported. The fact these problems continue to persist is completely unacceptable. They must be rectified and we must make sure this does not happen again. The legislature will continue to monitor this situation and demand answers from the Dayton Administration on this inexcusable failure of the MNLARS program. 


Tour of Radiation Center

Recently, I went on a tour of the Maple Grove & North Memorial Hospital radiation centers. It is always useful to learn directly from experts how current legislation effects their industry and how proposed changes would help or hurt it. These are especially useful in the medical industry as we are always looking to help make health care more affordable while increasing the access to it. 

House Image House Image

Rep. Smith touring the facilities at Maple Grove & North Memorial Hospitals

High School Page Program 

The Minnesota House of Representatives High School Page Program is now accepting applications. Over the last 40 years the program has provided high school juniors with hands-on access to our state government in action. I encourage any high school junior who may be interested in learning more about the legislative process to apply for the page program by December 1st. Click here to apply

Please continue to share your thoughts with me about our state government; bill ideas and concerns are welcomed! I am honored to serve you at the Capitol. My email address is Rep.Dennis.Smith@house.mn, phone number 651-296-5502, and by mail: 375 State Office Building, 100 Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Blvd., St. Paul, MN 55155.

Have a great weekend!
 

Dennis

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