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Legislative News and Views - Rep. Anne Neu Brindley (R)

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Legislative Update from Rep. Anne Neu

Tuesday, March 13, 2018

Friends and Neighbors,

With the legislative session now in full swing, I wanted to send an update to share some news from the Capitol.


Many of you have experienced problems firsthand with the troubled Minnesota Licensing and Registration System (MNLARS).  With nearly $100 million in taxpayer money already spent on the broken system over the past decade, Governor Dayton recently asked the legislature for an additional $10 million in order to finance ongoing operations.  House Republicans recently introduced legislation that would authorize the governor to transfer $10 million from the Department of Vehicle Services Special Revenue fund, and then require those funds be backfilled down the road with existing state agency funding.  By using money that is already in state government, I think this is a commonsense approach that protects taxpayers from more of their hard-earned money being used on this disaster.  This bill would also hold the administration accountable by requiring evidence of a detailed roadmap for meaningful solutions as well as monthly progress reports.  Minnesota taxpayers deserve a working system, and our goal through this bill is to increase accountability and ensure real fixes happen with any additional funding.  I will be sure to keep you updated on this bill as it works its way through the legislative process as well as on the MNLARS situation as a whole.

State Budget Forecast

At the end of February, economists from Minnesota Management & Budget announced a $329 million state budget surplus.  This surplus is an over half-billion dollar improvement from the $188 million budget deficit projected by the agency in November.  This forecast demonstrates that recently enacted tax reform, at the state and federal level, have helped create a thriving Minnesota economy.  It also demonstrates that there is no evidence of the negative economic conditions that Governor Dayton and Democrats predicted following the passage of our historic tax bill last May.  Given this surplus, I intend to advocate for legislation that will provide further tax relief as well as make targeted investments in needed areas.  In the months ahead, my fellow legislators and I will look to build on the progress we made last year by again prioritizing important issues such as tax relief, healthcare reforms, and bonding projects.

Broadband Funding

I am proud to co-author a piece of bipartisan legislation this session that would provide additional funding for rural broadband efforts.  House File 3527, which was introduced last week, would allocate $51 million in fiscal year 2019 to be used in our state’s border-to-border broadband program.  Access to quality broadband is a critical infrastructure need for the rural communities in our area, as well as in rural communities across the state.  I remain committed to working with my colleagues in the legislature to do what we can in order make this vital service more accessible and affordable.


I had the opportunity to welcome numerous visitors to the Capitol last week.  Here are photos of a few of them:

It was great chatting with FFA Club students from Chisago Lakes and Forest Lake.

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Great seeing folks from East Central Regional Library during their day at the Capitol.

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As session continues, please feel free to contact me with any questions or thoughts that you have on any matter of state government.  Your input helps me to best represent our communities, and I appreciate you taking the time to reach out.