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State Representative JoAnn Ward

231 State Office BuildingState Office Building
100 Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Blvd.
651-296-7807

For more information contact: Gina Vega 651-296-5526

Posted: 2017-02-09
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Legislative Update

Legislative Update- February 9, 2017


Neighbors and Friends,

We are into month two of session, and the days are filled with diverse legislative ideas and proposals. Below is a legislative update in addition to a few exciting opportunities for community and state service positions.

Preemption in Committee

Late last week, the House Jobs Committee heard a “preemption” bill that would create uniform working standards across the state. Supporters say the bill would protect businesses from having to navigate a patchwork of local rules. At the same time, opponents of the legislation claim the bill would harm workers, by preventing implementation of policies such as sick and family leave, or a minimum wage increase, especially for those in low-wage jobs.

My main concern is how this legislation would remove the ability for communities to control setting their own local labor policies. I also have concerns about the provision in the bill that rolls back sick time for hundreds of thousands of people working in the Twin Cities.  This is an issue of working conditions, quality of life and public health.

Conservation Corps Application

The Conservation Corps will hire over 700 young adults ranging in age from 15-26, to assist in restoring natural resources, removing invasive species, and a multitude of other projects that improve Minnesota’s beautiful assets. Positions are open all over the state.  If you know of anyone who may be interested, please visit conservationcorps.org/apply.   I’ve also attached a flyer with application deadlines for specific positions.

Sexual Assault Survivor Advocacy

The full extent of sexual assault on college campuses is not known, but because of some high visibility cases in the news, the issue is getting more attention. What is known, is that victims of sexual assault are often too afraid or traumatized to come forward or do not know exactly what to do after a crime occurs.

I would like to make you aware of training opportunities available for anyone who would like to become certified as an advocate to provide services to victims or survivors of sexual violence. Training is also offered to volunteers interested in providing peer counseling, assisting with support groups, teaching about sexual violence in schools and legal advocacies.

To learn more, click on the following links:

https://www.sexualviolencecenter.org/get-involved/become-an-advocate/

http://www.mncasa.org/40-hour-trainings

https://www.360communities.org/event/domestic-and-sexual-violence-advocacy-training/

Constituents at the Capitol

Yesterday, I had the opportunity to meet with accountants from our district for CPA Day at the Capitol.  They were advocating for federal tax conformity and penalties for unlicensed tax preparers who cause harm through fraud, for instance, to name just a few items. We had a great discussion on what goes on in their daily operations and their volunteer assistance work to low income residents.  I was grateful they could take the time out of their busy tax season to come visit.

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Please always feel free to contact me on any legislative topic of interest.  I appreciate hearing from you.

Sincerely,

JoAnn Ward

Minnesota House of Representatives  ·   100 Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Blvd. Saint Paul, MN   55155   ·   Webmaster@house.mn