For more information contact: DJ Danielson 651-296-8879
The pace is picking up at the Capitol, Friday was the third and final committee deadline for bills. Thereafter, the focus will shift from committee hearing rooms to the House Floor. After Governor Dayton unveiled his supplemental budget proposal earlier this session, last week the House majority began putting their own budget plan together. As we look ahead to the May 21adjournment date, I’ll keep fighting for the things our community values, like great schools, quality health care, good paying jobs and the ability for seniors to retire with dignity.
Constituents continue to visit the State Capitol, and I enjoy the opportunity to meet with them. This week I got to visit with advocates from the Minnesota Coalition for Battered Women.
In 2016, the Legislature passed a law creating new licensing requirements for eyelash extension technicians. This year, I introduced a bipartisan bill to exempt them from being licensed by the Board of Cosmetology.
While the 2016 legislation was well-intentioned, the way the board has taken a one-size-fits-all approach, creating some astronomical costs for those in the business, especially women of color. Some of them have been treated as full-service salons when the only service provided is eyelashes extensions. Training and licensing fees have proven to be excessive, as are specific requirements for the space, such as a minimum number of sinks. I’m confident we can ensure Minnesotans get safe services like this, but do so in a way that doesn’t make it prohibitive to stay in business.
The bill has been included the Omnibus State Government Finance Bill.
Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women
In an earlier update I discussed a bill from Rep. Mary Kunesh-Podein and fellow members of the Native American Caucus to create a task force investigating the endemic of Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women. In some regions of Minnesota, Native women are murdered at rates that are more than 10 times the national average. This is unacceptable.
Currently, there is no system in place to collect comprehensive data on missing and murdered Native women in Minnesota. The task force will include the Commissioner of Public Safety, state, tribal, federal, and non-governmental agencies to develop appropriate methods to track and collect this data. It will analyze the systemic causes of the high number of missing and murdered Indigenous women, and improve coordinated efforts to end this violence.
After earlier passing out of the Government Operations Committee, the proposal has been included in the Public Safety Omnibus Finance Bill. This task force is a crucial step in ensuring that Native women and girls are seen, heard, valued, and believed. I’m honored to be a co-author of this bill.
Moms Demand Action Rally
Wednesday, Moms Demand Action for Gun Sense held a rally at the State Capitol with a continued call to end gun violence. It was great to meet with some members of the group from our community.
Common-sense, lifesaving solutions have been put forth including one requiring criminal background checks and another providing for extreme risk protection orders. A new poll conducted by Survey USA says that even 89 percent of gun owners support expanded background checks. We could have already made progress on these measures, but Republican leaders have stopped them from moving forward. This shouldn’t be that difficult. I’m committed to delivering on common sense gun safety measures that will make our families, communities, and Minnesota safer.
Last week, I got to visit with members of AFSCME who work hard maintaining safe and peaceful environments in their capacity as correctional officers.
It was also a treat to welcome Scott Sandelin, head coach of the University of Minnesota – Duluth Bulldogs men’s hockey team which recently won the NCAA national championship.
Please keep in touch with your ideas, feedback, or if I can ever be of assistance. It’s an honor to represent you at the Capitol.
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