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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: 2017-03-01
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Legislative Update

Legislative Update- March 1, 2017


Dear Neighbors,

Yesterday, Minnesota Management and Budget announced that we have a forecasted budget surplus of $1.65 billion. The February Economic Forecast revealed that Minnesota continues to have low unemployment and a stable budget.

While Minnesota's economy is performing well, we should always be looking for ways to improve. This surplus is an opportunity to reinvest in all Minnesotans - through strong public schools, affordable college and job training, and access to good jobs and good benefits like paid leave and earned sick time across the whole state.

For too long we have neglected our roads, bridges, and transit system, and it has been three years since the legislature has passed a robust bonding bill to invest in our infrastructure. It is time to put politics aside and put the needs of Minnesotans first.

In order to stay competitive, it's vital we reinvest in our priorities to ensure better economic outcomes for Minnesota families. I'm ready to get to work with Governor Dayton and the Legislature to do just that.

Outdoor Firearm Range Facility Noise Mitigation

Last week, Senator Kent and I participated in a community meeting to discuss a bill we are sponsoring, specifically related to the outdoor firing range located west of Century Avenue South in Maplewood.  The outdoor firing range facility has been utilized for training by the Saint Paul Police Department for years, however residents have always been concerned about the level of noise produced as a result of these training sessions.  The legislation would provide state bonding funds to create more noise mitigation updates to the facility.  The bill has been referred to the Public Safety and Security Policy and Finance Committee.  I will work hard to get the bill a hearing before the first committee deadline on March 10.

Constituent Visits

Advocacy group meetings are picking up. For example, I met with a constituent who was advocating for library funding, and had the opportunity to visit with school groups from Tartan and John Glenn Middle School.  Constituents from the district visited yesterday to share their support for the arts.  I’ll also learn more from about the equalization of school funding from more education groups.  I’m always grateful to gain a broader perspective on various topics from these meetings.

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Please always feel free to keep me updated on your priorities and ideas.  I appreciate your input. 

 
Sincerely,

JoAnn Ward 

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