I hope you and your family had a blessed Easter! It was a busy first week back in St. Paul after the Legislature’s break. In this week’s update is an invite to an in-district “office hours” event, an update on the Governor’s agricultural buffer zone proposal, as well as a reminder to fill out my 2015 legislative survey.
In District “Office Hours” this Saturday
I will be hosting in-district "office hours" this Saturday at Bernie’s Grill in Faribault beginning at 10 am to meet with constituents to discuss their priorities for the legislative session.
These “office hours” give me the opportunity to meet with folks in a less formal, one-on-one environment. It is extremely important that I gain input from local residents as important pieces of legislation are being debated at the Capitol.
Here are the details for Saturday’s event:
What: In-District “Office Hours”
When: Saturday, April 11th, 2015
Time: 10 am- 11 am
Where: Bernie's Grill
129 Central Ave N
Faribault, MN 55021
Governor Dayton’s Buffer Zone Proposal
Governor Dayton was in Northfield recently to discuss his new agriculture buffer zone proposal. As currently proposed, the Governor’s plan would require farmers to create a 50-foot buffer of perennially rooted vegetation adjacent to ditches, rivers, and streams.
Current law requires a 16.5 foot buffer along public ditches to prevent runoff; the Governor’s proposal would triple those requirements.
Buffers are an important conservation practice that can have a positive impact on water quality when they are right size and in the correct place. However, many farmers and farm groups believe that the Governor’s proposal goes too far and are questioning the need for a one-size-fits-all approach.
Furthermore, the Governor’s proposal would come with a significant cost to farmers, as the current proposal does not provide any compensation for those would lose the approximately 125,000 acres removed from production. Additionally, many county soil and water conservation districts would likely lack the needed resources to handle the increased workload.
Ultimately, farmers care about water quality and have worked well with state and federal agencies in the past to implement common sense measures to ensure Minnesota continues to maintain its high water quality standards.
The proposal, as it currently stands, poses many more questions than answers. I encourage you to contact my office to let me know your thoughts on this issue.
2015 Legislative Survey
I encourage you to complete my 2015 legislative survey. You can take the survey by going to my House webpage and clicking the “2015 Legislative Survey” link on the right-hand side of the screen.
It is my hope that as many constituents as possible complete my survey and weigh in on some of the important issues that are being debated at the Capitol. I am anxiously awaiting your feedback.
If you would prefer to fill out the survey by hand, please contact my office and we will mail a paper copy to your address.
Staying in Touch
Please encourage your family, friends, or co-workers to sign up for my weekly email updates. They can sign up by visiting my official House page.
As always, do not hesitate to contact me to discuss any questions, comments, or concerns you may have regarding the legislature. I can be reached by phone at 651-296-8237 or via email at firstname.lastname@example.org. You can also stay connected with me by visiting my Facebook page and my Twitter account.