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Legislative Update – February 26, 2024

Monday, February 26, 2024

Legislative Update – February 26, 2024

Dear neighbors,  

Last week at the Capitol I was proud to meet with sheriffs about how we can best support them at the Legislature. Last year, we provided $300 million in local public safety aid, including over $12 million for local cities and counties in our area. I also was glad to meet with folks from ISAIAH, Faith in Minnesota, and visit with South St. Paul High Alum Emma Smith who presented her research at the “Scholars at the Capitol” event!

Hansen Constituent Visits

I was also honored to attend the Stand with Ukraine rally marking the second anniversary of Russia’s illegal invasion of Ukraine alongside refugees and members of the Ukrainian American community to affirm our continued support for Ukrainians in their time of need. You can learn more at the Ukrainian American Community Center site:


Funding for Emerging Environmental Issues

As a co-chair of the Legislative-Citizen Commission on Minnesota Resources, I am glad to share that last week Governor Walz approved our recommendations for over $900,000 in funding for emerging environmental issues, including:

  • Funding to MnDOT for Reducing Turtle Mortality through Exclusionary Fencing on MnDOT Right of Way
  • Funding to the Minnesota Lakes and Rivers Association for Stop Starry Invasion - Community Invasive Species Containment
  • Two projects in Dakota County that expand natural habitat space in our county through conservation easements (the “Benjamin” project and the “Haskell Street” project)

Whether it’s protecting native turtles, addressing aquatic invasive species, or increasing conservation land in Dakota County, these projects will help protect our natural resources for decades to come. You can read my full press release here.


Joint Hearing this Week

Minnesota taxpayers should not be on the hook for costly clean-up projects caused by corporate polluters.  This Wednesday, I will be holding a joint hearing with the House Capital Investment Committee regarding PFAS contamination and its effect on Minnesota’s infrastructure. Capital Investment Chair Fue Lee and I are dedicated to ensuring that polluters pay for the damage they have done to our water, our infrastructure, and our health.


The hearing will take place this Wednesday at 2:00 pm in the State Office Building Basement Hearing Room. You will be able to watch the committee hearing on the House Public Information YouTube page here.


Other News Headlines

Last week the Minnesota Reformer covered an important hearing in the House Agriculture Committee on fertilizer runoff and drinking water protection: EPA directive renews debate over state’s role in protecting drinking water from farm pollution.

Hansen Reformer Story

Here’s an excerpt from the article: "Rep. Rick Hansen, DFL-South St. Paul, was on a 1989 Nitrogen Fertilizer Task Force that outlined best management practices to reduce nitrate pollution. Decades later, Hansen found himself in a committee hearing room, listening to the same proposals, even as the problem has worsened.

“The outcome has been more fertilizer use, more nitrates,” Hansen said Thursday. “Things have to change.”


Stay in Touch!

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


Rick Hansen
State Representative