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Legislative News and Views - Rep. Peggy Scott (R)

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Legislative Update (Nov. 25, 2013)

Monday, November 25, 2013

Dear neighbor,

While the next legislative session doesn’t begin until late February, I’ve been busy meeting with constituents, citizen organizations, and community events around the district and the state.

I recently spoke the League of Women Voters on the subject of Judicial Retention Elections. At the moment, I do not have a strong opinion on this matter. The system we have now has served us well. I would favor some sort of evaluations on judges so that the public has more information on which to base their vote relating to the judges that serve their communities.

On Thursday, November 7, I attended Taste of the Community in Anoka to benefit Youth First, an organization that works toward reducing risky behaviors in youth in Andover, Anoka, and Ramsey. The group was founded in 1991 and has done tremendous work opening their doors to the young people of our community.

With the school board elections now over, I met with a focus group regarding choosing the next superintendent for the Anoka-Hennepin School District. Citizens can contact the school board by clicking here and share their thoughts about what our next superintendent should have as his or her priorities and what qualities he or she should possess.

I was honored to be able to take part in a ribbon-cutting ceremony for the nursing program at the Blaine campus of Rasmussen College. More than ever, we need dedicated nurses in the medical field and I believe this program will be a positive force for our community and our state.

On Friday morning, I met with Anoka County Sheriff James Stuart to hear about what issues law enforcement is dealing with. Top of the list was heroin overdoses. Other issues discussed were mental illness and human trafficking.

It’s also been busy at the Capitol. As a member of the Legislative Commission on Metropolitan Governments, I attended a hearing on the Met Council’s budget. I’m particularly concerned that the Met Council budget is set to be $888 million for 2014. This is a 7.26% increase over 2013 when the budget was $827 million and it’s 20.14% larger than 2012 when the budget was $739 million. The Met Council noted in its report that their budget calls for needing to meet unmet transit needs and doing so will grow their transit budget from $546 million to $1.75 billion. It’s curious to me that the North Star Commuter Rail is going from 34 full time employees to 49 full time employees without a clear explanation as to why these new employees are needed. I continue to wait for an answer on this question from the spokesperson for the Met Council.

With Thanksgiving coming up next week, I hope you and your family enjoy some quality time together as we take a moment to be thankful for the blessings in our lives.

As, always, I’m interested in your feedback. Please feel free to contact me by e-mail at Rep.Peggy.Scott@House.MN or contact my office at 651-296-4231. You can also send me mail to my office address: 201 State Office Building, 100 Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Blvd., St. Paul, MN 55155.