Thank you to all of you who attended the Senate District 64 town hall meeting last Sunday. We had an excellent turn out and a great discussion. There'll be another chance to talk with Sen. Cohen, Rep. Murphy, and me later this month - details below.
Funding to Investigate Sex Trafficking
As many of you know, outside of the Legislature I serve as a prosecutor of domestic and sexual violence, including sex trafficking. In that work, I've seen law enforcement agencies don’t always have the tools they need to investigate these very difficult, time-consuming cases. In response, I've been working on bipartisan legislation (HF 1776) that would provide funding for multi-jurisdictional task forces and technical assistance.
Last week, I was joined by law enforcement officials from communities throughout Minnesota to present my bill in the Public Safety Committee. I’m pleased to report that the funding has been included in the committee's omnibus bill which will be debated on the House floor. If you’d like to read more about the bill, I’ve provided some links below:
KARE 11: Police look to step up battle against sex traffickers
House Session Daily: Grants sought to help law enforcement fight sex trafficking
Committee video coverage can be viewed here.
Local Visit by Governor Dayton in Support of Early Education
Earlier this week, our district received a gubernatorial visit! Governor Dayton spent time in a pre-K classroom at Expo Elementary, a St. Paul public school in our neighborhood. Photo below! The Governor, Sen. Cohen, Rep. Murphy & I discussed the need for strong funding and options - ECFE, Head Start, child care assistance, early learning scholarships, and pre-kindergarten. I hope to focus much of my work at the Capitol on early learning and development, and I'm thrilled by the Governor helping to focus so much attention on this crucial issue.
Ford Site Update
Unfortunately, my bill (HF 609) to provide the City of St. Paul with flexibility in the use of tax-increment financing (TIF) at the Ford site was not included in the initial draft of the omnibus bill from the Property Tax & Local Government Finance Division. I serve on the Division and argued against the exclusion. After debate, a limited version of my bill - extending the time for the City to certify a TIF district - was incorporated into the bill. I'll continue to push in support of strong redevelopment at this site. In the meantime, a reminder that you can sign up for updates about the site - including opportunities for community input - at this address: http://stpaul.gov/21stcenturycommunity.
Upcoming: Senate District 64 Constituent Luncheon
The Senate District 64 Constituent Luncheon will be held on Tuesday, April 28 from 11:30am-1:00pm. This year it will be held in the State Office Building, Room 300 South (third floor) and we will be ordering boxed lunches from Cecil’s. To RSVP, please email Joshua.Ney@senate.mn with your lunch order (or note that you do not need a lunch). RSVP by Thursday, April 23 at 3:00pm.
Keep in Touch
The final weeks of the session will be jam-packed. Please don't hesitate to contact my office - info below - to share your thoughts on legislative issues.
Thanks so much for the honor of serving our community,
State Representative, District 64B
321 State Office Building