For more information contact: Andrew Wagner 651-296-2809
I hope everyone had an enjoyable time at the Night to Unite events on Tuesday! It was great to see so many block parties going on throughout our community. I hope the event in your neighborhood went well, and am grateful to everyone who everyone who stepped up to organize the parties here in our area. I enjoyed visiting several of the block parties and visiting with neighbors.
Mille Lacs Update
You may have heard in the news that Governor Dayton is asking for a special session to provide relief to resort owners on Mille Lacs Lake who have been impacted by the early end to the walleye season. The DNR closed walleye fishing for the season at 10PM Monday. The closing of the season is due to anglers and tribes fishing on the lake reaching the seasonal limit far earlier than expected. This problem has been made worse due to the continuous decline of walleye populations in Mille Lacs over the past several years. Many of the businesses on Mille Lacs rely on walleye fishing tourism, and have seen cancellations in light of the DNR's announcement.
At the request of Speaker Daudt, the Governor agreed to first convene a working group to examine the issue further and determine whether a Special Session is truly necessary. Many of our state agencies have flexibility within their budgets and existing programs for businesses they may be able to use to provide some relief to these business owners. I hope the working group can find a solution that meets the short-term needs for the tourism on Mille Lacs while also coming up with a plan to make sure the walleye population can return to normal levels in the coming years.
August 1st marked the beginning of many new laws in Minnesota passed and signed into law by Governor Dayton earlier this year.
Here are some of the major ones you may have heard about:
Right to Try
This law allows terminally ill patients the ability to receive a written prescription for experimental drugs and treatments that have gone through their first clinical trials but have yet to be approved by the FDA. Manufacturers of qualifying drugs or devices would provide the product for free and insurance companies would not be required to cover the costs. Oftentimes these experimental treatments are the last resort for patients who have exhausted all other options and conventional forms of recovery.
Military and Veteran Laws
"Hire a Veteran" month has been moved from May to July. May is usually a busy time with graduations, the fishing opener, Mother's Day, and other events, so moving it to July will mean more promotional opportunities and attention. July also happens to be when the Department of Employment & Economic Development holds its largest military career fair.
Family Law Reforms
A number of reforms to child custody laws started on August 1st, the result of nearly two years of collaborative work by a bipartisan group of legislators and advocates. The new laws revise child's best interest standards for custody decisions, clarifies that 25% is the minimum amount of parenting time in a child support determination, changing custody and visitation laws for parents who are members of the armed services, among others.
Chamber Coffee Events
On Tuesday, August 4th, I attended two coffee meetings; the Apple Valley Chamber Coffee Connection at Culver's in Apple Valley, and the Dakota County Regional Chamber Coffee Break at Chuck and Don's pet store in Rosemount. It was great to visit and hear about folks' Night to Unite plans, as well as what's on everyone's mind as we start looking ahead to fall and back to school season.
Apple Valley Business Watch Picnic
Also on Tuesday, I attended the Apple Valley Business Watch Picnic, which featured food trucks, business booths, a raffle, live music, and more. The Apple Valley Business Watch is a non-profit organization committed to helping prevent crime in our business community, to learn more, visit: http://avbizwatch.org/
Pine Bend 60th Anniversary
On Thursday, August 6th, the Pine Bend Refinery celebrated its 60th Anniversary. Over 1,500 people attended, including present and former employees, elected officials, and community leaders. It was a great way to celebrate a successful company in our community that is committed to safe work conditions, protecting our environment, and providing valuable products - such as the gas you use in your car every day. To learn more, visit: http://pinebendrefinery.com/
State Fair Bus Service
If you are planning to go to the State Fair later this month, the Minnesota Valley Transit Authority is offering $5 rides from every day from the Burnsville/Eagan Transit Stations, and Saturdays, Sundays and Labor Day at the Marschell Road Transit Station in Shakopee. For full details, a schedule of ride times, and other information, please visit the MVTA website at www.mvta.com.
As always, please don't hesitate to contact me at any time with questions or comments. You can reach me at firstname.lastname@example.org or by calling 651-296-4306. You can also follow my updates on Facebook at www.facebook.com/repannawills or on Twitter at www.twitter.com/annacwills.
Have a great weekend!
State Representative, District 57B
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