We’re back in St. Paul following our short break, and we’re once again moving quickly and discussing a number of big issues. I had an eventful few days with bill presentations that I think can really help our state.
Data Practices Bill Moving Forward
This week, I had a hearing for my bill that would require the Data Practices Office (DPO) and its functions to move to the Office of Administrative Hearings (OAH). I see this as a common sense reform that would make it easier for citizens to get their Data Practice Requests fulfilled.
Currently, a government entity can stall and not fulfill a request, and the only recourse is for citizens to file an action at the OAH that can be upwards of $1000 at the cost of the citizen. That’s quite a steep price to pay when you consider it’s the government entity who could be purposely trying to avoid fulfilling the request. I always want to see a more transparent government, and this bill would do that by moving the DPO, and lowering the fee to $250.
The bill was held over for possible inclusion in the State Government Finance Bill.
Law Enforcement Legislation
I have a bill, HF3259, that helps to regulate law enforcement’s use of automatic license plate readers (ALPR) and police body cameras. My bill was just heard in the Public Safety Committee, and clarifies current law regarding the audits of both ALPR and body cameras. We want to make it clear for law enforcement what the expectations are for these audits so we know the law is being followed. While useful, ALPR and body cameras present us with a number of questions regarding how the data is used and stored, so we have to be certain citizens are protected.
The snow is causing some trouble for some planned outdoor events, but we’ll hopefully see the actual coming of spring soon. The Andover recycling event was supposed to be tomorrow but is now moved to April 28. The event is at 1785 Crosstown Blvd. NW and runs from 9am-1pm. You can click here to see the rules for what can and cannot be recycled.
Likewise, the city of Coon Rapids has extended their recycling hours just in time for some spring cleaning. Here’s the link for more info.
Even though it’s hard to imagine now, we’re quickly approaching Arbor Day on April 27. That means it’s time to order trees as part of the Coon Rapids Arbor Day Tree Sale. The Coon Rapids website has all the information you need to start your spring off right.
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Have a great weekend and stay safe on the roads,