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Mid-term Report from the Legislative Session
March 31, 2010
The 2010 Legislative Session is only half-over. But already state lawmakers have made significant progress on much of the work we set out to do.
In just six weeks, we have passed two major jobs initiatives, resolved one-third of the budget deficit, restored health care for 70,000 of Minnesota’s poorest, sickest people, passed comprehension absentee ballot reform, and made needed progress on a bipartisan small business agenda.
Bonding Bill (HF2700)
– The Minnesota House has passed a jobs-targeted bonding bill that will put many Minnesotans back to work. The bill makes strategic investments in high-priority, shovel-ready infrastructure improvements.
Economic Development (HF2695)
– Continuing our focus on the economy and job creation, we passed new tax incentives that will help small businesses, spur needed economic development, and create jobs in bioscience, manufacturing, construction, and the emerging clean energy economy.
General Assistance Medical Care (HF2680)
– Working together, lawmakers have passed a bipartisan solution that partially restores basic health care for 70,000 of Minnesota’s poorest, sickest people, and prevents 20,000 working adults from losing MinnesotaCare coverage.
Budget Cuts (HF1671)
– The Minnesota House has resolved one-third of the state’s $1 billion budget shortfall. Making carefully-crafted, strategic budget cuts, lawmakers have already trimmed $312 million in state spending. Our work on balancing the budget continues as we wait to hear how potential federal dollars could impact Minnesota’s budget outlook.
Bipartisan Small Business Agenda
The bipartisan Small Business Caucus I am a member of is taking action to make Minnesota a better place to do business. Eight bills backed by the Caucus would free up needed capital, cut red tape, and better-connect small businesses with existing state resources. Several of those bills passed this week in the economic development bill (HF2695) including an Angel Investor Tax Credit and expansion of Minnesota’s Research and Development Credit. Work on the other six bills is ongoing.
Election Reform (HF3108)
– Acting on lessons learned during the 2008 US Senate election recount, lawmakers passed bipartisan election reforms to make our voting system the most reliable in the nation – while helping Minnesotans cast their ballots more easily.
With seven weeks left in the legislative session, we still have important work left to do. The Legislature is scheduled to adjourn May 17th. Please contact me in the weeks ahead with your questions, suggestions, or concerns. As always, I look forward to hearing from you
Whether you celebrate Easter or Passover, I hope you all have an enjoyable holiday weekend.
State Representative Sandra Masin
House District 38A
Town Hall Meeting with State Demographer Tom Gillaspy
Please join me and State Demographer Tom Gillaspy for a town hall meeting at 7:00 PM on April 29 at Eagan City Hall for a discussion on the 2010 Census. We'll be talking about Minnesota's changing demographics and the public policy implications for Minnesota's budget in the coming decade.
Much attention has been paid to the forthcoming 10-year census because it will determine whether Minnesota retains or loses one of its eight seats in the U.S. House of Representatives. The census count also impacts everything from the way local city council wards get drawn up to the way legislative districts are redesigned. Perhaps most important, according to Masin, is the influence the census will have on the way federal money is distributed to state safety net programs, low-income housing loans, local government aid and a host of other federal, state and local programs.
There’s so much more at stake for Minnesota than just whether or not we hold on to a congressional seat. Census information is used to attract new businesses, plan for hospitals and school projects and create maps to speed emergency services to households needing assistance, so it’s important to get an accurate count to help us effectively plan for Minnesota’s future.
In addition to the census information, I'll be providing a brief overview of the 2010 Legislative Session. I hope you'll come with your questions and concerns about the census and any other issue related to state government.
May 5 - Veterans Career Fair
To celebrate Hire a Veteran Month in Minnesota, the annual Minnesota Veterans Career Fair will be held on Wednesday, May 5, in Brooklyn Center. Sponsorship and exhibitor opportunities are available. The event is 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. at the Earle Brown Heritage Center, 6155 Earle Brown Drive.
Employers can sign up or get more information by calling 763-785-6461 or by sending an e-mail to firstname.lastname@example.org
. More details are available at www.PositivelyMinnesota.com/Veterans
State Representative 38A
527 State Office Building
100 Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Blvd.
Saint Paul, Minnesota 55155
(651) 296-3533 Direct
(651) 296-8803 Fax