Minnesota House of Representatives


State Representative Sandra Masin

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

For more information contact: Bennett Smith 651-296-6422

Posted: 2017-11-22
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Legislative Update

Thanksgiving Update - November 22, 2017

Dear Neighbors,

As we prepare for the Thanksgiving holiday tomorrow, I wanted to take a moment to express my thankfulness to all of you for being so engaged in the past year, and a few other updates including a recap of the State Veterans Day Observance, a letter I sent expressing the need for more local clean energy jobs, the legislative lawsuit result, and info about Free Park Friday this week.

Thanks to Participants of the State Veterans Day Observance

The State of Minnesota held its Veterans Day Celebration at the Inver Grove Heights Veterans Memorial Community Center Saturday, November 11th. It is always an impressive event. For one, the 34th Infantry Division Red Bull Band provides the music. Also, the excellent attendance helps give us insights into the many diverse veteran experiences and makes for interesting conversations. Third, the speeches help illustrate the importance of observing Veterans Day.

The Keynote speakers were Douglas Bradley and Craig Werner, the authors of “WE GOTTA GET OUT OF THIS PLACE – THE SOUNDTRACK OF THE VIETNAM WAR.” They talked about how important music was to the troops during that time. It was easier to have veterans tell their stories if they first talked about the music that was important to them while they were in Vietnam.

The highlight is always when the Red Bull Band plays the songs for each branch of the military and the people stand when the music for their branch is played.

The many federal elected officials attending did a very good job of emphasizing the importance of our military and paid tribute to them.

Truly a special way to observe Veterans Day.

Local Energy, Local Construction Jobs

I recently joined many of my House colleagues and signed on to a letter to the Public Utilities Commission addressing the importance of local construction jobs and the need for transparent local hiring reporting for the Stoneray wind project and other future wind projects. You can read the letter here. We can create hundreds of local good paying clean energy jobs for Minnesotans if we prioritize or local workforce, rather than relying on out-of-state workers.

Supreme Court decides Legislative lawsuit

The Minnesota Supreme Court sided with Governor Dayton on Thursday, upholding his veto power in a case brought by the legislature. Here’s an MPR story explaining how this happened and what it means for keeping the Legislature functioning.

Free State Parks on Black Friday

Lt. Governor Tina Smith is once again promoting “Free Park Friday” in Minnesota. Entrance fees to all Minnesota state parks and recreation areas will be waived on Friday, November 24, 2017. All Minnesotans are encouraged to get out and enjoy the outdoors with family and friends on the day after Thanksgiving. I think it’s a great idea, and a healthy way to spend Friday after Thanksgiving being thankful for time with family and nature.

Research shows that spending time outdoors benefits children and adults, including improving mood, enhancing creative thinking and problem solving, promoting a conservation ethic, and improving physical fitness. On Thanksgiving Day, the average American consumes around 4,500 calories. A brisk walk can burn about 300 calories in one hour.

Visitors and families who visit parks throughout the winter season can participate in hundreds of naturalist-led state park programs, or they can bird watch and search for other wildlife. A few parks will offer special programs on Free Park Friday:

  • Fire Starting – Learn how to start a fire without matches or a lighter from 12pm to 2pm at Tettegouche State Park on Minnesota’s North Shore. Meet at the park’s fireplace plaza behind the Visitor Center.
  • Beavers in Winter – Find out how beavers survive and thrive in cold weather from 10am to 11:3am at Whitewater State Park near Winona. Meet at the visitor center for a brief introduction, then take a hike to look for signs of beaver.
  • Family Turkey Trek – Take a naturalist led one-mile hike to the upper cliff line of the quarry in search of a wild turkey or signs of wild turkey from 3pm to 4 pm at Blue Mounds State Park in Luverne.

Get directions and find recommended hikes online at the DNR Free Park Friday page.

Please contact me if you have any questions or concerns.


Sandra Masin

State Representative



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