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Legislative News and Views - Rep. Ron Kresha (R)

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Special Session update 06-13-2015

Saturday, June 13, 2015
Dear Friends,

Thursday night legislative leaders and Governor Dayton agreed to a one day special session that took place Friday and concluded about an hour ago. The special session was needed to pass three budget bills vetoed by Governor Dayton last month. All three bills were passed and are expected to be signed into law.

The House and Senate also passed the Legacy bill which allocates funding from the Legacy Amendment sales tax approved by voters in 2008, and a small bonding bill that funds road and bridge projects as well as other important public works projects across the state. 

Here are some highlights from the budget bills that passed: 

Education
-$525 million in increased funding and historic investments in early learning programs and scholarships.
-Historic investments in early learning programs and scholarships. Since coming to the legislature I have been a big advocate for Pre-K
scholarships, rather than a universal approach. Research shows we get the best outcomes when we target our dollars to the at-risk kids who need it
most. I'm proud of the bipartisan work on this bill and was happy to vote for it.

-This bill helps continue to balance school funding between Greater Minnesota and Metro-area schools. The average per-pupil increase across the
state is $388. Non-Metro schools are about $396 compared to Metro schools at $380.

-The bill includes important reforms to make it easier for qualified out-of-state teachers to come to Minnesota. This should help us continue to address our teacher shortage.
-Reductions in state-mandated testing

Jobs and Energy
-Unemployment assistance for poultry workers impacted by avian flu and steelworkers impacted by layoffs on the Iron Range
-Funding for broadband and workforce housing
-Job training to help train Minnesotans for highly skilled, better-paying job openings
-Funding for Science, Technology, Engineering and Math (STEM) student internships
-Respects taxpayers by reducing spending overall

Environment and Agriculture
-Funding for agencies fighting avian flu
-Streamlining and reforming environmental regulations and red tape
-Reduces spending overall

Please email me with any comments or questions on these or any of the other bills that have passed. Reach me any time by email at rep.ron.kresha@house.mn or call 651-296-4247.

Have a great weekend,

Ron Kresha
State Representative District 09B