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Legislative Update - January 9, 2023

Monday, January 9, 2023

Legislative Update - January 9, 2023

Dear Neighbors,

This past week my colleagues and I already started hearing and passing bills to move Minnesota forward. I have introduced several bills addressing needs in our community and bills to help protect and preserve our environment and natural resources!

  • HF047 – A bill to provide funding for the University of Minnesota to research the effect of pesticides, parasites, and climate disruption impacts on pollinator populations.
  • HF050 – A land management bill allowing some acquisition and divestment of lands in accordance with the Department of Natural Resources' land management goals.
  • HF060 – A bill to increase referendum equalization aid for Special School District #6 (South St. Paul Schools)
  • HF070 – A bill strengthening worker fair-labor standards in agricultural and food processing industries.
  • HF126 – A bill providing funding to improve the Doug Woog Arena in South St. Paul.
  • HF154 and HF161 – bills providing funding for the South St. Paul water treatment plant and to replace drinking water infrastructure.
  • HF162 – A bill appropriating money for a new South St. Paul public works facility.
  • HF172 – The Environment and Natural Resources Trust Fund bill, provides funding for various environmental studies and projects based on previous recommendations.
  • HF189 – A bill appropriating money for a property repurposing study in South St. Paul.
  • HF206 – A bill to examine the impact of neonicotinoid pesticides on game species.

As the session continues, I will post updates on the progress of these bills and more soon to be introduced. You can find a list of all the bills I have authored or co-authored here.

First Environment Committee Hearing

Last Wednesday, the Environment and Natural Resources Finance Committee held its first meeting of the 2023 legislative session. Legislators and staff made introductions and House nonpartisan research and fiscal staff walked through the committee’s jurisdiction.

The committee also heard my bill, HF050, a bill relating to state land management. Last year a similar bill passed the Environment committee with bipartisan support. After testimony from the Department of Natural Resources, legislators voted to pass the bill out of committee. You can find a video of the hearing and more information in last week’s Session Daily post.

This week, the Environment Committee will hear a presentation on Tuesday from the DNR on the current state of Emerald Ash Borer in Minnesota in a joint hearing with the Senate Natural Resources and Legacy Committee. Then on Wednesday, we will take up a bill to continue funding for the popular Lawns to Legumes program, and my bill to study the impact of neonicotinoid pesticides on Minnesota’s game species.

Chronic Wasting Disease Interview

Last Sunday I was interviewed by MPR’s Dan Gunderson regarding the state’s response to CWD. Here is a transcript of that appearance:

“About 20 deer have tested positive for chronic wasting disease in Minnesota since July first of 2022.  State Representative Rick Hansen says a comprehensive package of reforms to address chronic wasting disease will be a legislative priority. Hansen chairs the Environment and Natural Resources Finance and Policy Committee.

Hansen says the DFL-controlled legislature is likely to approve transferring authority over deer farms to the Department of Natural Resources. "I see tightening and restrictions, if there are highly professional facilities that operate and can contain the farms, we'll be open to that."

There have been past proposals to buy out deer farms to help stop the spread of CWD. Hansen does not think there will be legislative support for a buyout. Deer farms are considered a risk for spreading the disease to the wild deer population.”

Apply for HomeHelpMN Now

With HomeHelpMN, Minnesota Housing may be able to help those who are behind on their mortgage or worried about foreclosure due to the pandemic. Visit or call 1-800-388-3226 to apply for financial assistance. Homeowners may be eligible for up to $50,000.

Applications will be accepted as long as funds are available. Minnesota Housing hosted a webinar on the HomeHelpMN program last week. It included information on eligibility requirements and how to apply. Watch the HomeHelpMN webinar. There is also a downloadable toolkit available with additional materials, including posters, social media images and messaging and flyers, with materials in English, Spanish, Hmong, and Somali.

Stay in Touch 

Please continue to share your questions, ideas, and feedback throughout the legislative session. You can reach me by email at or by phone at 651-296-6828. You can contact my new Legislative Assistant Sam O'Neill at 651-296-3305 or via email at


Rick Hansen
State Representative