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Legislative News and Views - Rep. Marion Rarick (R)

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Legislative Update (Feb. 9, 2015)

Monday, February 9, 2015

Dear neighbors,

Thank you to the many individuals who have reached out to me to discuss their concerns regarding legislation being proposed before the House. I am honored to represent a district that is so involved in the legislative process, and is so concerned for the future of our district and our state.

I care deeply about the ability of our community to grow. This is why I’m troubled by the announcement that a solar developer is planning on purchasing 600 acres of land in Monticello without city or county approval. Currently, we have a state law that gives final approval to the Public Utilities Commission (PUC), with no approval needed from local authorities. The land along the I-94 corridor is prime land for the development and growth of our cities’ residential, industrial, and commercial needs. This land grab will destroy Monticello’s ability to expand in the future. Representative Newberger (R-Becker) and I have authored legislation that requires county approval for such projects. This proposal would ensure that all future solar developments are approved by local governments, not only the PUC. I believe that Monticello and other cities know how to use their land best. The state and PUC should honor those decisions that are best in line with the cities’ future development needs.

When I speak to small business owners in our district, I often hear about agency over reach and burdensome regulations from the state. Specifically, I hear often that the current practices surrounding Department of Revenue sales tax audits overwhelm businesses. I have communicated these concerns to the department. Officials from the department informed me that they have begun to shift their method of audits to provide relief to businesses that have a strong record sales tax compliance and will re-focusing their attention on non-compliant businesses. I hope that this change provides our locally-owned businesses with some much-needed relief and predictability!

On Tuesday, January 10th, we’ll be hearing from University of Minnesota Regent candidates in a joint hearing of the House and Senate Higher Education committees. I look forward to hearing their plans for the future of the University of Minnesota, and working with my colleagues to choose a proper group of candidates to put before both bodies in a joint legislative session.

Please do not hesitate to reach out to me to share your thoughts on any legislation before the House. You can schedule an appointment to visit me at the Capitol by calling my legislative assistant at
(651) 296-5884, or contact me directly via email at Ensure that your friends and neighbors are informed by encouraging them to sign up for my emails here, and be sure to follow me on Facebook and Twitter.

It is an honor to serve our great community.



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