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Legislative News and Views - Rep. Zack Stephenson (DFL)

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Legislative Update- Robo Calls, Climate, and Safe Schools

Thursday, November 07, 2019
Rep. Stephenson

Dear Neighbors,

I hope this finds you well and enjoying the cooler weather. It’s been a busy summer and fall.

Here’s an update from the Capitol:

Fighting Back Against Predatory ‘Robo-Calls’

We all have experienced it -- the perpetual buzz on our mobile phones from familiar numbers, with a local area code, that are actually “spoof” calls, commonly known as ‘robo-calls.’ These calls aren’t just a nuisance -- swindlers also use them to prey on senior citizens, vulnerable adults, and landline phone users, many of whom do not have caller-ID.

As the explosion of fraudulent robo-calls grows, we must demand a strong response that holds bad actors accountable, which is why I am proposing the toughest legislation in the nation to crack down on these predatory schemes. You can read more about my proposal from Minnesota Public Radio’s coverage here.  

Climate Action Caucus

The House Climate Action Caucus, of which I’m a proud member, recently kicked off a series of public events with a conversation about transportation. One of our goals as a caucus is bringing people with different backgrounds and areas of expertise together. We’re holding these public hearings so Minnesotans can join legislators and experts at the table and be part of creating a bold plan to combat climate change.

The first community conversation was dedicated to transportation because it’s the largest source of Minnesota’s greenhouse gas emissions. There was a great discussion about this with several experts and the Minnesotans who joined us. Some of the potential solutions we discussed were expanding public transportation, supporting electric vehicles, and promoting biofuels. We’ll hear from housing experts on climate at our next public event on November 14, and start a much-needed discussion on future policy. Learn more details about it here.

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Investing in Safe Schools 

Minnesotans deserve safe and secure schools, and protecting our students is of the highest priority in our work at the Legislature. As part of Minnesota’s new education budget passed earlier this year, over $30 million in funds will be available for Minnesota’s schools at the end of the month as part of the 2020 Safe Schools Supplemental Aid.

The 2020 State Schools Supplemental Aid is a one-time appropriation included with school districts’ Integrated Department of Education Aid System (IDEAS) payment. This investment will better ensure that our community is able to address the unique safety needs of our schools –such as mental health counseling, facility security enhancements, peace officer liaisons, gang resistance education training, and other safety provisions.

Anoka-Hennepin School District will be a recipient of approximately $1.3 million in Safe Schools Supplemental Aid.

Keep in Touch

Please contact me anytime with questions or input. I appreciate hearing from you!

Sincerely,

Zack Stephenson

State Representative