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Legislative News and Views - Rep. Cal Bahr (R)

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Friday, February 12, 2021

This quote has been on my mind this week: Human happiness is not an optional extra. Our lives should not be at the mercy of governments operating from bogus science, to be turned on and off at whim. - Tom Woods, Jr.

Cosmetology Bill going forward

I have introduced a bill with Sen. Karin Housley that would eliminate the State Board of Cosmetology and allow local governments to issue licenses for Barbers and Salon services within their jurisdictions. HF 554 was originally sent to Health Finance & Policy in the House despite it being fully within the jurisdiction of the State Government Finance committee and Chair Liebling expressed that she would not be willing to hear the bill this year. However, I was successfully able to move the bill to State Government Finance this week - like it is proceeding in the Senate - and we will move forward with our hearing requests there.

I made video to better explain what we're trying to do: Rep. Bahr Explaining HF 554 regarding the Board of Cosmetology

If you want to read through the language of the bill, you can find it here: HF 554

Your Turn to Comment on Car Emissions Rules

When the Walz administration couldn't get the Legislature to cooperate with his "California Emissions" goals, he got the MPCA to attempt to use rulemaking to go around us - AGAIN. Here's where you can help!

Two ways you can participate

The Minnesota Pollution Control Agency (MPCA) is working to adopt a new rule to reduce vehicle emissions and make more electric vehicles available to consumers in Minnesota, known as the Clean Cars Minnesota rulemaking.

The current open comment period closes on March 15, 2021.

There are two methods you can use to ask questions, share your feedback, and voice your opinion during this comment period. You can choose one or use both methods outlined below.

Method #1: Submit written comments to Judge Palmer-Denig

Write your question or comment down and submit through the Office of Administrative Hearings e-comments website, or by fax or mail according to the instructions in the public notice.

Step-by-step instructions for how to submit a comment and attach documents is available on the Office of Administrative hearings website: Directions for using the rulemaking e-comments website

All comments regarding the proposed rule must be sent to the administrative law judge (ALJ), Judge Palmer-Denig, to be included in the official rulemaking record.


Method #2: Submit a comment at the public hearing

You also have an opportunity to attend the public hearing online and ask your question, share your suggested changes, or voice your opinions there. Judge Palmer-Denig will conduct the hearing using Webex.

  • February 22 and 23, 2021
  • Beginning at 3 p.m. Central both days
  • Links to attend via Webex are included in the public notice

Whether you submit a written comment or give testimony at the public hearing, your feedback will be considered equally by the ALJ.

Here's the direct link to the MPCA page asking for your feedback if you're having trouble with the links here: MPCA Rulemaking Feedback.

It is important for us to get as many people as possible to let Governor Walz and his administration know YOUR opinion, not just the green energy lobbyists.


"SAFE" Act Coming to the House Floor

Monday, the 15th, is the day that the "Minneapolis Bailout bill" comes to the House floor.

We have already heard a lot of discussion about the proposed SAFE Act. This bill appropriates $35 million into an ANNUAL account that will be used to address extraordinary or unplanned public safety events.

It is being set up that this is a bill to support our Law Enforcement - and there are a LOT of local law enforcement very concerned about their ability to be compensated fairly when they are called upon to assist in extraordinary circumstances. But there is just no way around the fact that several parts of this bill set a very bad precedent and there is no way we would be having this discussion if it wasn't for the abysmal leadership and response shown by the urban centers of Minneapolis and St. Paul and Governor Walz last year.

First, I understand the concerns. After law enforcement officers from across Minnesota went to Minneapolis to address civil unrest, many of the police departments and sheriff’s offices that sent officers have still not been reimbursed for the costs that were incurred. This bill would set up a fund to make sure law enforcement agencies across Minnesota are properly reimbursed when they serve in another jurisdiction. BUT the fund would be a PERMANENT set aside that could merely perpetuate bad decision-making.

I am also concerned that this bill centralizes power with the Minnesota Department of Public Safety and the Governor's office. There are portions of this bill that give the commissioner of public safety broad power to decide which law enforcement agencies will receive reimbursements. I do not want to empower government officials in St. Paul, I want to make sure law enforcement agencies make the decisions that are right for them.

For these reasons, I will vote against the bill on Monday.

Choose Freedom,


Cal Bahr
State Representative, 31B

Coming up Next Week

  • Among other issues, I will be hearing about a new Cannabis Management Board the democrats want to set up in Commerce Committee and Trunk Highway Bonding in Transportation.
  • Our lawsuit against Governor Walz's unconstitutional emergency powers has a hearing set for next Wednesday. Over the past eleven months, the Governor has exercised pure legislative power by unilaterally writing laws without legislative oversight or judicial review. Our lawsuit seeks to put an end to this dictatorial behavior. We have not yet heard from the courts whether we have permission to stream this hearing, but we will update you once we have further information.
  • I have received a lot of calls and emails from my community about HF 604 - the mask mandate. Let me assure you that I do not support the mandatory wearing of masks and will be voting against any bill that would require you to wear one.


We are still attempting to provide regular contact remotely regardless of our COVID-19 restrictions so If you have any questions, please don’t hesitate to contact us - please email my Legislative Assistant, Barbara, at

Watch the Minnesota House on Public TV

Video: Streaming Website. Also you can watch committees and Floor Sessions on YouTube.