Please accept Linda’s and my holiday greetings. We wish you and yours a merry Christmas and Happy New Year. We are so blessed in this country that we can celebrate the birth of baby Jesus in an environment of genuine freedom of religion.
On Tuesday, House Speaker Kurt Daudt announced the 2017-18 committee assignments. I am thrilled with my assignments which include serving as vice chairman of the Mining, Forestry and Tourism Committee, and continuing as a member of the Agriculture Policy and the Veterans Affairs committees. I also will join two committees I have not previously served on including the Environment and Natural Resources Policy and Finance, and the Capital Investment (aka Bonding) committees.
Those assignments will allow me to be directly involved in matters concerning, agriculture, environmental and natural resources, veterans and tourism policy, state agency finance issues and our state bonding policy.
While those areas will keep me very busy, that will not lessen my efforts in the area of our seniors, the disabled and our healthcare system. I also will continue to push for tax reform and am especially interested in helping our small businesses and eliminating the state income tax on seniors’ social security retirement pensions.
This week, I met with the leadership of the Sno-Serpents snowmobile club at Deerwood and the Aitkin County Board of Commissioners to listen to issues that are impacting our area. It’s very important that our area snowmobile trail system remains stable and ready for lots of snow. This could be one of those great years for snowmobiling. It’s also important to learn firsthand what kinds of issues our local governments will be facing as we begin the New Year.
Again, Linda and I wish all a very merry Christmas and successful new year. As always, be safe as we enjoy this nice stint of kinder and gentler winter weather.