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For more information contact: Mike Molzahn 651-296-1774
Legislative Update - November 22, 2017
Thanksgiving is a time we share a meal and celebrate with our friends and family. This year as I reconnect with loved ones, I will reflect about the values that are important to our community and what makes Minnesota such a special place to live.
I’m thankful for everything that our great state has to offer, but I am also looking toward the work that is still unfinished. We must strive to raise wages, because too many people are working two or three jobs and are still struggling to make ends meet. Families are being forced to choose between a paycheck and caring for a loved one. Too many teachers are forced to spend their own earnings on supplies for their classrooms. The gentle souls that care for Minnesota’s aging population and our most vulnerable citizens are underpaid and many can’t afford to continue their important work. College costs continue to rise, and more and more it looks like the pursuit of additional education and career training is out of reach for too many. It is clear we have a lot of unfinished business to ensure that all families have a fair shot at success.
Rising Star Award
Last week, the Minnesota Solar Energy Industry Association presented me with their Rising Star award for my work to help support and expand clean renewable solar energy in Minnesota. While I truly appreciate this recognition, I know that we have a long way to go before we meet our full potential with clean renewable energy. It was also great to see Doug from our community at the event. He is one of the group’s original members.
Beyond the Yellow Ribbon
Recently, I shared a meal with our local Beyond the Yellow Ribbon Chapter and some of our area Boy Scouts. It is great to see both groups work together to support our community.
Small Business Saturday
If you’re planning to do any post-Thanksgiving shopping, please consider shopping locally at small businesses. These unique shops make our neighborhoods thrive and help the owners share in the American Dream. Money spent at small businesses, on products made locally, or even on a meal from a local restaurant, stays in our economy longer and is a bigger boost to Minnesota than dollars spent elsewhere.
Cold Weather Rule
Minnesota has so much to offer as we begin to see the weather turn cold, but for many in our community though, colder weather can pose significant challenges. Specifically, 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.
As always, please don’t hesitate to contact me with any issues or concerns you may have.
I hope you have a lovely Thanksgiving!
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