Legislative Update – March 25, 2023
This week, the Legislative Audit Commission Evaluation subcommittee narrowed 132 possible topics down to 16. The next step will be to get legislator’s input on a final list of 6 topics for the auditor to evaluate. As chair, I welcome your input and will continue working through this process and keep you all updated.
Environment Committee Budget
This week, Speaker Melissa Hortman, Senate President Bobby Joe Champion, and Governor Tim Walz announced a joint framework for a new state budget for the 2023 legislative session. The budget invests $670 million dollars in the environment and natural resources. This is a historic investment in our environment and natural resources, protecting our environment, air, soil, water, and wildlife.
As Environment Committee Chair, we have been hard at work preparing to roll out a budget that pays past debts and rights past wrongs while also laying a foundation for the future. That budget will be released on the committee webpage on Monday. We will be walking through our budget next week, and you can find more information, including links to the live stream footage, on the Environment Committee webpage.
Newport Water Infrastructure
On Wednesday, I presented my bill helping the city of Newport upgrade its water and sewer infrastructure in front of the Capital Investment Committee. These much-needed improvements will help address inflow and infiltration issues and ensure clean water for our community. Thank you to city committee administrator Joe Hatch for joining me and testifying in support of the bill.
House Floor Votes
On Monday, the Minnesota House passed legislation to ensure Minnesotans have access to reproductive health care and preserve patient privacy. We passed the Reproductive Freedom Defense Act, which intends to protect patients and providers from other states’ laws infringing on health care decisions within our borders.
On Thursday, we passed a bill that would ban private prisons in the state of Minnesota, and legislation ensuring that Minnesota is in the best position to unlock federal funds for clean energy projects, meet our climate goals, and transition to a cleaner future. This bill invests $115 million to unlock billions in federal funding and will create good-paying union jobs and make sure that everyone can benefit from this clean energy transition.
Finally, we voted on legislation making Minnesota a refuge for trans people, supportive families, and the providers who serve them. Minnesota can be a beacon of hope in the Midwest, and this bill ensures that these decisions are made by patients, their families, and their health care providers—not politicians.
Stay in Touch!
Please continue to share your questions, ideas, and feedback throughout the legislative session. You can reach me by email at email@example.com or by phone at 651-296-6828. You can contact my Legislative Assistant Sam O'Neill at 651-296-3305 or via email at Samuel.ONeill@house.mn.gov.