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Legislative News and Views - Rep. Paul Anderson (R)

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Legislative update

Friday, March 1, 2024

Dear Neighbor,

It has been a rather busy week in St. Paul and here are just some of my latest news and notes from the House:

Local meeting on low-carbon sustainable fuels

I look forward to hosting a town hall meeting in Hancock on Friday, March 8, to discuss the use of corn and soybeans in low-carbon sustainable fuels.

A representative of Delta Airlines will be on hand to share what Delta is doing to prepare for the use of sustainable aviation fuel in the future. Brian Werner, executive director of the Minnesota Biofuels Association, also will attend to discuss the proposed low carbon fuel standard for Minnesota.

Jet fuel represents a huge market and, if ethanol could be used as a feedstock for sustainable aviation fuel, it would represent a tremendous new demand. But there are some hurdles to get to that point, and this meeting will help farmers and those involved in the production of ethanol become more familiar with the topic.

Also invited to attend are representatives from the Minnesota Corn Growers and the Minnesota Soybean Growers, in addition to personal from the Denco II ethanol plant in Morris and the Chippewa Valley ethanol plant in Benson.

The March 8 meeting will be held at Buddies Bar and Grill, just off Highway 9 in Hancock, beginning at 10 a.m.

State economic forecast

State officials issued a new economic forecast for Minnesota on Thursday, with a looming $1.5 billion shortfall through 2027 overshadowing a $3.715 billion surplus for the current biennium.

This state budget report reiterates how one-party control in St. Paul has led our state on an unaffordable path, draining our historic $17.5 billion surplus and putting our state on track for a shortfall despite raising taxes by $10 billion.

Not only that, but Democrats have failed to live up to their promises to fully eliminate the state tax on Social Security, provide $2,000 rebate checks and completely fix the errors they made in last year’s tax bill. We need more balance at the Capitol to clean up this mess and stabilize our state budget.

The state is fully funded for the current two-year cycle, meaning no additional state spending is necessary this session. The new bottom line will guide legislators through supplemental fiscal considerations the rest of the 2024 session.

Gun-control bills

The House committee on public safety on Thursday conducted hearings for a pair of anti-Second Amendment bills authored by Democrats.

The bills are H.F. 601 – Her, arbitrary deadline for reporting for lost and stolen firearms; and H.F. 4300 – Becker-Finn, regarding firearm storage. Both proposals seem to do more to criminalize good-faith, law-abiding gun owners than to crack down on the repeat criminals and other true bad actors our courts continue putting back on the street.

Rep. Her’s bill puts the onus on the victim of a crime to file a report to law enforcement within the government’s definition of reasonable time – 48 hours. If you are the victim of a firearm theft, and the perpetrator of that crime commits another crime with your stolen weapon, the bill stipulates that you may be held responsible.

Rep. Becker-Finn’s bill requires a person to either store a firearm not in the person’s direct control in a safe or unloaded with a locking device. On the same day the DFL introduced this bill that makes it a crime if a law-abiding firearm owner does not unload a firearm and secure it with a locking device in the person’s home, the DFL also introduced a bill (HF4277) that repeals mandatory minimum sentences for violent crimes involving the possession or use of a firearm.

These increased penalties come in a context where the actual perpetrators of such crimes are increasingly released back out onto the street under laws passed by Democrats in 2023 … and bills they continue pushing today. It is misguided to crack down on gun owners who honor our laws and act in good faith instead of going after the real criminals. I do not support that approach and will continue opposing these anti-Second Amendment bills.

Until next time, have a nice weekend and please stay in touch.



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