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Legislative News and Views - Rep. Ami Wazlawik (DFL)

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Legislative Update - October 8, 2019

Tuesday, October 08, 2019

Rep. Wazlawik

Dear neighbors, 

Seeing the breathtaking colors of the trees is one of my favorite parts of the changing seasons in Minnesota. The Department of Natural Resources has a color finder with maps and tips for finding peak leaf viewing spots. You can check it out here.

Mini Session

As I mentioned in my last email, my colleagues and I traveled to southeastern Minnesota last week for a three-day mini session. We heard from many Minnesotans, held public committee meetings, and attended informational tours and presentations in Winona and the surrounding communities.

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My first stop was the Hormel Foods Plant in Austin, Minnesota. My colleagues and I also toured the Hormel Institute and learned about the important cancer research that’s being done there.

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On Thursday, I had the opportunity to speak with teachers and staff from Winona Area Public Schools. During our roundtable discussion, we focused on teacher recruitment and retention, addressing mental health needs, and funding issues.

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We also held a public hearing to discuss the critical shortage of child care in Minnesota. Parents, child care providers, and business leaders talked about how this crisis has impacted them and their communities, and we discussed policies that would help meet their needs. An article about the public hearing is available here.

The mini session was part of our efforts to provide more opportunities for Minnesotans to share their experiences and participate in the legislative process. Getting out into communities throughout the state helps us connect with people and learn more about each place. It’s also an opportunity to explore the unique qualities and places that make each community special. For example, visiting the Minnesota Marine Art Museum in Winona was one of my favorite parts of mini session!

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I particularly enjoyed the museum’s Underwater Dogs exhibit.

Upcoming Referendum for White Bear Lake Area Schools

More and more people are choosing to live and raise a family in our community. Our excellent schools are part of what’s drawing people to our area, but keeping up with rapid increases in enrollment has been a challenge for them. In the White Bear Lake Area School District, enrollment has increased by seven percent since 2010. Another 2,000 students are expected to enroll in the next ten years. Our schools must expand and change to meet the needs of our growing community.

On Tuesday, November 5, residents of the White Bear Lake Area School District will have the opportunity to vote on a bond referendum that would help local schools manage increasing enrollment and prepare for continued growth. If it’s approved, the referendum will help address building needs and maintenance, improve safety and security, and create flexible learning spaces. You can view a detailed list of what projects would be done at each school here.

A short video about the bond referendum is available here. Additional information is available at www.isd624.org/Bond2019.

Make Your Voice Heard

Minnesota Values Project

The Minnesota Values Project is an ongoing partnership between Minnesotans and elected officials. We’re working together to create a shared vision for the future of our state, and your input is an important part of this process! Please let us know what’s important to you, your community, and Minnesota by taking a short survey here.

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Young Women’s Cabinet

The Young Women’s Cabinet of Minnesota is currently accepting applications for several openings. This is a great leadership opportunity for women between the ages of 16 and 24! I highly encourage anyone who’s interested to apply.

More information about the cabinet and the applications process is available here.

Reminder: Town Hall on TCE

For several months, I’ve been working hard to protect our community and other Minnesotans from TCE and other dangerous chemicals. If you’d like to learn more about the work that I’ve done with residents and other elected officials, please join me for a town hall on Saturday, October 26. This town hall, hosted by Conservation Minnesota, will focus on TCE-related issues and proposed solutions, including my bill to ban TCE use statewide. I hope to see you there!

When: Saturday, October 26 from 10 – 11:30 a.m.

Where: Hanifl Performing Arts Center, 4941 Long Ave., White Bear Lake, MN 55110

As always, please don’t hesitate to share any questions or feedback or let me know if I can be of assistance.

Sincerely, 

Ami Wazlawik
State Representative 

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