Minnesota House of Representatives


State Representative Connie Bernardy

253 State Office BuildingState Office Building
100 Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Blvd.

For more information contact: Mike Molzahn 651-296-1774

Posted: 2017-11-17
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Legislative Update

Legislative Update - November 17, 2017

Dear Neighbors,

I hope autumn is treating you well and you’re preparing for Thanksgiving and the holiday season.

Heating Assistance and Cold Weather Rules

Minnesota has so much to offer as we begin to see the weather turn cold, but for many in our community, colder weather can pose significant challenges. The burden of heating bills can be too much to bear for some families, and no one deserves to be left in the cold. For those Minnesotans under certain income levels, help may be available for payment of energy bills, help with utility disconnections or fuel deliveries, and advocacy with power companies and human service providers. For more information, including eligibility and how to apply, please visit the Minnesota Department of Commerce’s website here.

On October 15, the Minnesota Cold Weather Rule also went into effect which protects residential utility customers from having their heat shut off during the winter months. Certain low-income consumers aren’t required to pay more than 10 percent of their household income toward current and past heating bills, while others are eligible to arrange a Cold Weather Rule payment plan. More information is available from the Public Utilities Commission here.

It’s also the time of the year when open enrollment is available for those accessing health insurance on the individual market. The open enrollment period runs until January 14, but if you want to ensure coverage on January 1, the deadline to enroll is December 20.

Serve Minnesota and our community

I encourage you to apply for one of the 200 current openings on state boards, councils, and commissions. Those openings include Board of the Perpich Center for Arts Education, Board of Water and Soil Resources, Commission on Deaf, Deaf-Blind, and Hard of Hearing Minnesotans, Council on Disability, Juvenile Justice Advisory Committee, and many more.

To see a full list of board, council, and committee openings and apply, visit the Minnesota Secretary of State’s website. To assure full consideration, applications are due by Monday, November 27, 2017.

If you want more information before you apply, the Secretary of State has a lot of great resources ranging from searching what positions are open, the types of positions or seats available, and all sorts of useful information on what the specific boards and task forces do.

Also, Minnesota will be holding several public events where you’ll be able to learn more about serving. Check how when you can connect, engage and participate in the policy decisions that impact you by serving on a state board, commission or taskforce. Two upcoming meetings are in early December in both Brooklyn Center and Saint Paul.

I hope you’ll take a look and consider sharing your skills by serving on a board, commission or task force.

Want to stop junk mail?

If you’re getting too much junk mail, the Minnesota Pollution Control Agency has some great information for you. It’s estimated that each person spends 30 hours a year, or five minutes a day, sorting and discarding junk mail. One day’s supply of junk mail contains enough energy to heat 250,000 homes. There are lots of good reasons to opt out of the junk mail you get.

So take a minute checking out this handy website from the PCA and opt out of junk mail to save time, energy, and resources.

House High School Page Program

Modeled after the United States Congress Page Program, the Minnesota House of Representatives High School Page Program was established in 1975. Today, the program remains dedicated to providing students with meaningful opportunities and has evolved into one of the top page programs in the nation.

Throughout the course of their week in Saint Paul, High School Page Program participants are exposed to a wide variety of experiences, designed to provide them with a deep understanding of our state government.

The Minnesota House of Representatives High School Page Program is open to all Minnesota high school students in their junior year.  Applications are due by December 1st! For more information and the applications, please visit the High School Page Program website.

As always, please don’t hesitate to contact me with any issues, questions, or concerns you may have. It’s an honor to be your voice as we work hard to ensure are values are a priority in our community and in Saint Paul.


Connie Bernardy

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