As of today, 728,801 Minnesotans have received their first dose of the vaccine and the state has administered over 1 million vaccine doses overall. I am pleased with this progress, but we need to move even faster. I am also concerned with reports that vaccine shipments were delayed in the last few days due to weather. You can track these numbers, which are updated daily at 11:00 a.m., on the COVID-19 Vaccine Dashboard.
Addressing Skyrocketing Prescription Drug Prices
Prescription drug prices continue to rise and remain out of reach for many because of the cost. Too many people are rationing or forgoing their medication altogether because they have to make the tough choice between paying for groceries, childcare, heating bills and more, and the medication they rely on to live healthy lives.
That is unacceptable. Nobody should ever have to make that choice. This week, my colleagues and I announced legislation that would establish a Prescription Drug Affordability Board, which is a key tool we could use in Minnesota to address the skyrocketing pricing of prescription medications. As Chair of the House Commerce Committee, I scheduled a hearing on the bill, and I am pleased to report it received a favorable reception. There is still a long road ahead before it becomes law, however. You can read more from the StarTribune’s coverage of the legislation here.
Preventing Price Gouging in Minnesota
Unfortunately, in times of crisis and public emergency, bad actors can come out of the woodwork to take advantage of people struggling. This has been in vivid display in Texas during the last few days, as the energy crisis has led to huge price increases in essential goods.
Did you know Minnesota is one of only a few states that doesn’t have a law against price gouging on essential goods and services? I have a bill to fix that. The legislation ensures normal and non-excessive consumer pricing on essential consumer goods and services for the health, safety, and welfare of the public, including food, water, fuel, gasoline, shelter, transportation, health care services, pharmaceuticals, and medical supplies. Minnesotans deserve to be protected from people who would take advantage of tragedy.
A team of cadets from the Anoka County Composite Squadron Civil Air Patrol has qualified as National Semifinalists in StellarXplorers - the National High School Space Challenge.
I'm pleased to share that Champlin resident Hannah Tepley is one of the cadets that serves on and contributes to this team, which is currently fourth in the nation!
StellarXplorers is an exciting hands-on learning experience that develops commercially valuable skills and increases appreciation for the critical role of space in our daily lives. The competition attracts all types of students with diverse backgrounds who will establish their own experiential base off accomplishment, all while building teamwork and leadership skills.
Congrats, Hannah! We're rooting for you and your team as you move forward to National Semifinals.
Keep in Touch
Please contact me anytime to share input, ask questions, or to let me know how I can be of assistance. You can reach me via email at firstname.lastname@example.org or by phone at 651-296-5513.
Thank you for the honor of serving our Champlin and Coon Rapids residents and families in the Minnesota House.