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Legislative Update (5-8-15)

Friday, May 8, 2015

Dear Neighbors,

This week saw the House pass the last of its major finance and policy omnibus bills. A lot of work has gone into crafting these bills and I am very encouraged about the positive impact these pieces of legislation will have on our District and Greater Minnesota as a whole.

These bills are now heading to conference committee where conferees from the Senate and the House will come together and work out the differences between the bills and come to a final bill that can be agreed upon by both the House and Senate. I urge you to contact your senator to encourage them to support the provisions in the House bills.

Thank you those of you who took time to complete my 2015 legislative survey. I appreciated hearing from many of you and value your feedback. Here are the results from this year’s survey:

Do you believe state funding for nursing homes and long-term care programs for seniors and for the disabled should be:

Increased: 63%

Kept the same: 34%

Reduced: 4%

Governor Dayton and the Senate DFL majority have proposed adding a 6.5% sales tax to fuel sales to fund transportation projects. Do you support this proposal?

Yes: 17%

No: 73%

Undecided: 10%

What is the best approach for addressing the problems with the Obamacare exchange in Minnesota, MNsure?

It isn’t working, repeal it entirely: 42%

It can be fixed by enacting significant reforms: 21%

It’s working, keep as it currently is: 13%

Give Minnesotans more options outside of MNsure: 23%

The February forecast showed that Minnesota is projected to have a $1.9 billion surplus for Minnesota’s 2016-2017 budget. What should the legislature do with that money?

Increase spending: 10%

Return it to the taxpayers: 49%

Keep it in the reserves: 39%

From your perspective, what is the best way to grow jobs in Minnesota?

Increase state funding for construction projects across Minnesota: 5%

Pass tax relief and incentives to encourage business growth and job creation: 21%

Limit state spending to the amount of revenue taken in and slow government growth: 18%

Use surplus finds to offer income tax relief so taxpayers can keep more of their hard earned money: 10%

Raise taxes and increase spending on state programs: .4%

Increase education funding and focus on workforce development: 13%

Combination of the above: 30%

Other: 2.6%

Currently, in tight budgeting times, school districts make layoff decisions based on teacher seniority. Some legislators are advocating for a reform that allows schools to also consider teacher effectiveness in those decisions. Do you support making this change?

Yes: 73%

No: 16%

Undecided: 11%

Under Minnesota law, Sunday liquor sales are illegal. Do you support repealing this law, allowing liquor stores to sell alcohol on Sundays?

Yes: 31%

No: 59%

Undecided: 10%

Do you support the federal court decision to prohibit the hunting of gray wolves?

Support: 14%

Oppose: 71%

Unsure: 15%

As always, do not hesitate to contact me if you ever have a question or comment about a piece of legislation or a state agency. I can be reached by phone at 651-296-9918 or via email at


Have a great weekend,



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