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Legislative News and Views - Rep. Duane Quam (R)

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News from Rep. Quam (03-19-2019)

Tuesday, March 19, 2019


It looks like Spring may finally be here. With highs returning to the 50s, we'll soon be complaining about it being too hot. We just had first deadline, and it’s been busy in St. Paul, below are a few of the things that have been happening recently. 

CCAP Fraud Report

Last Wednesday, I attended the LAC meeting, at which the Office of the Legislative Auditor gave their report on fraud in the Minnesota daycare program known as CCAP. There were two key takeaways from the report: first, there is widespread agreement that there is a substantial amount of fraud in the CCAP program, about $6 million has already been recovered; and second, we need to take action this session to improve program integrity, and put systems in place to catch and eliminate fraud.

Fraud and waste in our public programs is unacceptable, and it's clear that the Department of Human Services (DHS) has not done enough to stop the fraudulent activity from happening. House Republicans have several proposals that would improve program integrity for CCAP and other programs under DHS. Not only is this a waste of taxpayer money, but these programs exist to help the truly needed and when fraud takes place, it's the people who need it most who are harmed.

House Majority voted to increase health care costs 

Last year the governor vetoed a bill to fund a response to the opioid crisis out of our budget surplus. During Monday’s session, we saw a vote by the majority to increase health care costs by $20 million a year. 

It may feel good to add fees and taxes on pharmacies doctors, and drug manufacturers, but it all gets passed onto the patients. We should not be adding more burden to our sick citizens. Like with the provider tax, which has its cost put back on to patient's bills, this new opioid fee will be added to your hospital and doctor bills.

On top of passing the costs onto sick patients, this proposal doesn't provide funding to deal with the opioid crisis for 1.5 years. Using the budget surplus money like we passed last year and attempted to amend to this year's proposal, would have made money available immediately to deal with the opioid crisis and not be a new tax on sick people. 

Two Bills in Committee this Week

This week I have two bill hearings in committee for the city of Oronoco. Both are to fund different aspects of a wastewater treatment project. This is important, because many issues became evident after the 2010 flood. The process and programs are complex, so I have introduced the two bills to cover different components to this project and allow the preparatory work to continue while funding the major new wastewater system. 

  • HF 2158: This bill is being heard in the Capital Investment Division. It is a bonding proposal to fund the wastewater treatment project. 
  • HF 2159: This bill is being heard in the Greater Minnesota Jobs and Economic Development Finance Division. It appropriates money from the general fund to fund the wastewater project. 

Contact Me

Please continue to stay in touch to share your thoughts and ideas on issues important to you. You can schedule a time to meet with me in my office anytime by calling (651) 296-9236, or share your thoughts via email by emailing me at

Have a great week,