For more information contact: DFL Staff
On March 8, the Minnesota House convened for the 2016 session. With the restoration of the State Capitol still ongoing, the session will be extremely short. According to the Minnesota State Constitution, we must adjourn for the year by May 23. This means that we will only have approximately ten weeks to complete our work in Saint Paul.
The shortest regular legislative session in modern Minnesota history was in 1986 with just 47 days in session, and it’s possible this year will see fewer. Traditionally, the even year of the biennium is given to the bonding bill, which funds capital improvements to Minnesota’s infrastructure needs in areas like higher education, public safety, wastewater treatment, parks and trails, and others. Since the 2015 session adjourned with a considerable number of substantive issues left unaddressed, 2016 will ensure a hectic pace.
I would like to take a moment to share with you some logistics on public access to the Capitol during this year’s session. The allowed maximum occupant capacities for the Capitol Building this year is 278 people, which includes the 134 elected Representatives. That means there are only 144 spots for essential support staff, press, custodial, and public safety staff and most importantly, the public. It is extremely disappointing to me that the House majority’s policy will discourage citizens from engaging in the political process and with their elected Representatives.
Governor’s State of the State
I attended Governor Mark Dayton’s State of the State Address at the McNamara Center on the University of Minnesota’s campus on the evening of March 9, 2016.
I was pleased to hear that the Governor will continue prioritizing and putting middle class families first. Our high national ratings on job creation and economic growth should be recognized as a result of the hard work we have invested in our state. CNBC ranked us as the best place to do business, Gallup placed us at number one for its 2015 Job Creation Index and AARP says that Minnesota is the best state in which to retire. To maintain our economic progress, it is essential that we work together to find a long term and responsible transportation tax and bonding bill that works for all Minnesotans.
Somali President’s Visit to Minnesota
Last Friday morning I had the opportunity to meet Mr. Abdiweli Mohamed Ali, President of the Puntland region of Somalia. This Somali leader—who lived in the United States for 30 years—is helping to build a stable and more prosperous Somalia. Among his several messages was one of gratitude to Minnesota for giving comfort and support to thousands of Somalis fleeing 25 years of war and disintegration in their homeland. It was truly an exceptional visit.
The input I receive from my constituents is invaluable. Bills will be moving quickly this session from committees to the House floor for votes and I appreciate knowing your views on the issues that are of significance to you. I can be reached at: 651-296-3533 or via email at: firstname.lastname@example.org.
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