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Legislative News and Views - Rep. Fue Lee (DFL)

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Legislative Update - March 17, 2017

Friday, March 17, 2017

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Constituents visiting for Student Debt and Loan Forgiveness Day on the Hill

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Constituents visiting for Homeless Day on the Hill

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Constituents visiting for Disability Services Day at the Capitol

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Students visiting to advocate against HF 41

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Book launch for author Mai Neng Moua at Patrick Henry High School

Legislative Update

Reinsurance vs. MinnesotaCare Buy-in

On Monday, the Minnesota House passed HF 5, a reinsurance plan favoring insurance companies over the health of Minnesotans. I voted against this bill because HF 5 creates a program to subsidize insurance companies.

The legislation establishes an 11 member board to administer the program – with a majority of board members representing insurance companies – to backfill the cost of large healthcare claims. The program would be funded by the Health Care Access Fund, which currently funds MinnesotaCare. The Republican author said he doesn’t know the impact of the bill, so this means that we are giving nearly $400 million away to insurance companies with no guarantee it will reduce premiums, stabilize the market, or increase access for Minnesotans.

During Floor debate, I voted in support of an amendment to allow for the MinnesotaCare buy-in option. This would allow the public to buy-in to MinnesotaCare—a successful plan that has existed in Minnesota for 25 years—and provide more affordable choices for Minnesotans who are currently in the individual market. Participant’s premiums would cover the entire cost of their policies, meaning there would be no ongoing cost to taxpayers. Unfortunately, the amendment failed on a 54-77 vote.

You can find House Public Information Services’ coverage here.

Gun Violence Prevention – HF 1678

I recently sat down with House Public Information Services to discuss my bill to support the prevention of gun violence. You can watch the interview by clicking here.

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Committee Deadlines

Today at midnight marks the second of three legislative committee deadlines that House and Senate leaders establish annually to help narrow the number of bills receiving final action.

The second deadline is for committees to act favorably on bills, or companions of bills, that met the first deadline in the other house; meaning the bills that survived the first deadline in the House must be heard in the Senate and vice versa.

The third deadline is set for Friday, March 31 for committees to act favorably on major appropriation and finance bills.

Deadlines do not apply to the introduction of bills. Several finance bills are not subject to the committee deadline rule. Under some circumstances, committees in either house can hear a bill that didn’t meet the deadlines.

To help you better understand the process, our great nonpartisan House Public Information department put together a video explaining the process. You can watch here:House Image

Local News

Minneapolis Public Schools’ Wellness Policy

The Minneapolis Public School is looking at its Wellness Policy to comply with changes in federal rules. For those who are interested in school recess time, please click here to take a survey to share your thoughts with our Minneapolis School Board about the proposed policy changes.

Conservation Corps Summer Youth Job Opening

Conservation Corps Minnesota & Iowa is seeking applicants (age 15-18) for their Summer Youth Corps positions. The Summer Youth Corps positions pay $250 per week. The deadline to apply is March 26, 2017.

Program dates: Session 1: June 18 - July 16, 2017 Session 2: July 22 - August 19, 2017

More information can be found at www.conservationcorps.org/apply

I encourage you to contact me with any questions, comments, concerns, or ideas on any legislative topic. Also, I am available during select hours on Monday and Friday mornings most weeks for in-district meetings, if Northside residents aren’t able to make it to the Capitol. If you would like to send me a message or set up an in-district meeting, you can reach me by phone at 651-296-4262 or by email at rep.fue.lee@house.mn. I look forward to hearing from you!

 

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