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Legislative News and Views - Rep. Josh Heintzeman (R)

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Legislative Update from Rep. Josh Heintzeman

Friday, March 22, 2024

Dear Neighbors,

It’s been a busy week in St. Paul with 1st and 2nd committee deadlines today, Friday. These deadlines mean that bills must have received a favorable committee hearing in both the House and Senate by the end of the day. If they have not, the bill is effectively “dead” unless added to a larger bill later. Hopefully, this deadline will put an end to many of the extreme proposals that Democrats are pushing for.

As the Republican-lead in the Environment and Natural Resources Committee, we have had our work cut out for us with dozens of bills moving through committee this week. I am proud of the work my members on this committee have done to offer amendments and make the case for or against the proposals we have seen.

Sadly, we have seen bill after bill come before the Environment Committee that attacks farmers and the agricultural industry. This includes new regulations, more red tape to further delay the permitting process, and proposals that would raise taxes on fertilizer by more than 100%.

The timing of these proposals could not be worse as we celebrated National Agriculture Day on Tuesday. This is a time for us all to pause and thank a farmer for everything they do to feed our communities, state, nation, and world.

Democrats just don’t get it and continue to make life more difficult and expensive for farmers.

Looming Democrat Deficit

We received word recently that Minnesota is looking at a projected budget deficit as Democrats prove once again that they simply do not understand basic economics.

Despite what was once a $18 billion budget surplus less than a year ago, Minnesota is now facing a $1.4 billion deficit during the next budget cycle—and this is even after Democrats raised your taxes by $10 billion.

This is all very concerning news for Minnesota’s budgetary and economic outlooks. I am even more concerned because, within the annual February Budget Forecast report from the Walz Administration, they assume that the next budget will be reduced by 6%.

With Tim Walz in the governor’s mansion, I find it hard to believe that he will sign a budget next year that reduces spending.

Even with that assumption included in the report, state economists still project spending to outpace revenues. This is all heading towards a very dangerous place for Minnesota’s economy.

SROs Bill Signed by Gov. Walz

The School Resource Officers (SROs) fix bill was signed by Gov. Walz late last week and is now officially law. This means that the dozens of SROs across Minnesota that had been removed from middle and high schools can now return.

While this entire process took much longer than it needed to, I am nevertheless glad that we could get this done.

Public Safety Proposals

This week, House Republicans held a news conference to discuss a handful of legislative proposals to support law enforcement and keep our communities safe.

Recent events in Burnsville, Oakdale, and the prosecutorial mistreatment of State Trooper Ryan Londregan by Hennepin County Attorney Moriarty, have given us all a reminder of the challenges and dangers facing law enforcement.

Democrats have repeatedly demonized law enforcement by introducing anti-police bills and voting against pro-law enforcement provisions on the House Floor. While they continue to make our communities less safe and tie the hands of law enforcement, I stand ready to support our officers and give them the tools they need to do their jobs well and come home safely to their families every day.

Here is a summary of some of the proposals:

  • Allowing law enforcement agencies to purchase armored vehicles using state public safety aid that was allocated during last year’s legislative session. Agencies are currently prohibited from spending this aid on these tools.
  • Expanding the use of tracking devices for fleeing motor vehicles to help prevent high-speed chases.
  • Requiring county attorneys to disclose information regarding expert witnesses to peace officers in an officer-involved death incident. This is in direct response to the Trooper Londregan case.

Now, more than ever, we need to keep law enforcement and their families in our prayers and continue to support their amazing work on behalf of all of us.

Staying in Touch

Please be sure to reach out to me to share your thoughts, concerns, and ideas. I can be reached by phone at 651-296-4333 or via email at

God bless,