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Legislative News and Views - Rep. Glenn Gruenhagen (R)

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Legislative Update from Rep. Glenn Gruenhagen

Thursday, January 7, 2021

Dear Neighbors,

The 2021 Legislative Session officially began on Tuesday as I joined 133 other state representatives in taking the oath of office during a ceremony at the State Capitol.

This year’s legislative session will be a busy one as lawmakers will need to approve a two-year state budget before the end of May. I expect a spirited debate this year on how to appropriate your tax dollars with the state’s economic outlook improving when compared to the early days of the pandemic. As for myself, I pledge to always be a staunch defender of taxpayers and will work hard to keep government spending and growth in check.

Most of my work during the first months of session will take place in House committees. For the 2021-2022 legislative biennium, I have been appointed to serve on the following committees:

  • Climate and Energy Finance and Policy
  • Health Finance and Policy
  • Preventative Health Policy Division /GOP Lead

I am proud to be the GOP lead on the Preventative Health Policy Division. In my new role, I plan to work hard to increase choice and to ensure that Minnesotans have access to affordable health care that fits their specific needs. The government’s continued intrusion into the health care field has resulted in the destruction of the individual market. It is time to let the free market innovate and respond to consumer behavior and provide a better, more affordable, and effective product.

Business Restrictions Eased

On Wednesday, Governor Walz announced a loosening of restrictions on businesses and events. Here is a summary of the changes that were announced:

  • Restaurants are allowed to reopen at 50 percent capacity with a max of 150. Groups can include no more than six people, and tables must be spaced six feet apart. Bar service is allowed to resume to customers in groups of two. Restrictions on dining between 10PM and 4AM remain in place. 
  • Gyms remain capped at 25 percent, maximum capacity raised to 150, and classes can be increased to 25 people with distancing. 
  • Outdoor events and entertainment capacity remains at 25 percent with the maximum capacity raised to 250.
  • Indoor entertainment and events (bowling alleys, movie theaters, museums, etc.) may open at 25 percent with a cap of 150. 
  • Youth and adult sports games may resume January 14 with spectators subject to the same indoor entertainment restrictions. 
  • Pools are open at 25% capacity.
  • Wedding receptions and other "private parties" may resume with limits. If food and drink is served there is a limit of two households or 10 people indoors and 3 households/15 people outdoors. If there is no food/drunk, they are covered by the event/entertainment restrictions. 
  • Churches remain open at 50% but the overall capacity limit has been lifted so there is no maximum. 

This is good news for struggling businesses in our communities. Nevertheless, I will continue working to end the Governor’s peacetime emergency powers and restore the legislature as a constitutional co-equal branch of government.

Staying in Touch

Please do not hesitate to reach out to me to share your thoughts, questions, and concerns as it relates to state government. I can be reached at 651-296-4229 or via email at rep.glenn.gruenhagen@house.mn.

Have a great day,

Glenn

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