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Legislative News and Views - Rep. Jeremy Munson (R)

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Friday, January 22, 2021

The 92nd Legislative session kicked off earlier this month over a Hybrid Zoom model to a tense political atmosphere. The Governor’s Executive Orders declaring a state of Emergency are still in place. Although he has loosened these regulations, allowing businesses to have indoor dining for example, many are still reeling from the damage already done. In three weeks I have voted 10 times to end the Governors peacetime emergency but the Democrats are not budging. Even though science has proven that we need to reopen Minnesota Walz still insists we remain shutdown. 

This past week we received updates on the Governors vaccination rollout, as well as updates on the acquisition and distribution of the vaccine from Health care and department heads. We also heard a number of green energy initiatives in Energy and Finance this week. These are of course in line with Walz and his green energy initiative announced earlier this week. Checkout the Governor and DFL leaders plan to get Minnesota to 100% green energy by 2040 HERE.

First 2021 Bill Hearing for Our District

Munson Zoom

I had a hearing on my first bill of the session with Mayor Robert Peterson of Vernon City, to help acquire funding to finish the water treatment facility.

Minnesota's Green New Deal

Completely carbon-free by 2040. That’s the goal of the “100% Clean Energy Standard” initiative we heard in the House Climate and Energy Finance and Policy Committee Thursday. It would require that all of a utility’s electric power should come from carbon-free resources by 2040.

The concept has not been officially introduced as a bill, but its sponsor, Rep. Jamie Long (DFL-Mpls), the committee chair, wanted to have a discussion of its merits at an informational hearing before formally presenting it next Thursday. A standard would be established for all utilities to supply customers with electricity generated from carbon-free resources, beginning at 65% in 2025 and increasing every five years to reach 100% in 2040.

Under the plan, the Public Utilities Commission would expand its view of net benefits to include those pertaining to labor, environmental justice and low-income populations. It would encourage the location of new generating facilities in communities that are losing generating facilities that use fossil fuels. And it would allow the commission to require a prevailing wage for workers constructing wind and solar facilities. 

In addition the committee also heard Representative Long's other bill HF0010. This piece of legislation is aimed at creating the foundation for which the Governors California-style Green New Deal will be placed. It mandates to state agencies, and energy providers that they must exhaust all renewable energy sources before they are allowed to utilize traditional sources of energy. In short, if the state is building a new park or community center, that project will have to use renewable energy to power it unless a traditional energy source is more cost effective. Additionally the commission on green energy, which makes the determination of what type of renewable energy energy to use, will have set the bar so high for non-renewable energy sources that it will act as a ban on some of these non-renewable sources. 

While none of this legislation has grandfather clauses requiring citizens of Minnesota to make the switch to Green energy now, this legislation is aimed to take us there. It is aligning us more with the policies of California - which experienced massive power blackouts this past summer - putting Minnesotans last. We need a more open market that offers competitive solutions. If we let the State mandate to our energy providers how they produce or acquire that energy we are setting the bar for competition low. The only reason Solar, and Wind are cheaper now is because 10 years ago the technology wasn’t there. Market demands made that a possibility. 

Online Inquiry Process Available for Covid-19 Business Relief Payments

Small biz

Last week, the Minnesota Department of Revenue sent out the initial round of COVID-19 Business Relief Payments to nearly 4,000 eligible businesses across the state. This program, part of a bi-partisan COVID-19 relief legislation passed in December, offers direct relief payments to eligible restaurants, bars, gyms, and bowling centers impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic.

Businesses that did not receive a COVID-19 Business Relief Payment but think they meet the program criteria can contact the department HERE using their online inquiry process that is now available through Friday, February 5, 2021. Businesses can use this if their business either:

  • Did not receive a COVID-19 Business Relief Payment but they think the business met the program requirements.
  • Received a COVID-19 Business Relief Payment but they think the amount was wrong.

Businesses can find this online inquiry process by visiting and clicking “COVID-19 Business Relief Payments” found on the homepage.

Eligible businesses must meet the program requirements outlined in the legislation. Direct payment requirements for businesses include:

  • Being located in Minnesota
  • Had at least $10,000 in taxable sales in 2019
  • Filed Sales Tax returns in 2019 and 2020
  • Experienced a 30% drop in year-over-year taxable sales for April-September periods
  • Being categorized by the Minnesota Unemployment Insurance program as a restaurant, bar, gym, bowling center, or similar business

Direct funding to all of Minnesota’s 87 counties was also provided to set up local COVID-19 grant relief programs. Businesses not eligible for a direct payment from Revenue are encouraged to contact their local county for additional COVID-19 relief.

COVID Vaccinations

The Minnesota Department of Health announced this week a new pilot program for vaccination distribution. The program is for adults aged 65 and older, teachers, and child care providers. We do not have a pilot site in our community, but you can find other locations and learn more about the program HERE.

Minnesota is currently last in the Midwest in vaccination distribution. We need to be focusing on our seniors and vulnerable populations. Vaccinating them is essential for opening our businesses and getting our kids back in the classroom. I will continue to update you on this issue.

California Car Mandates

Gov. Walz is trying to cut out the legislature once again! His California Car Mandate would drive up the cost of all new vehicles by $1,000 for Minnesota families, reduce consumer choice, and place burdensome mandates on auto dealers. By trying to enact this disastrous policy through the administrative rulemaking process, he is leaving out Minnesota’s elected representatives.

Minnesota Pollution Control Agency is having public information sessions over the next two weeks. You can find more information HERE. You can submit a public comment by attending a virtual public hearing or online HERE. Tell Gov. Walz that we WILL NOT be the next California!

If you want to hear more about what happened this week at the capitol, download my free podcast to hear about additional topics covered in St Paul, along with a new segment explaining more about the legislative process. I will be releasing these weekly to keep you up to date on everything happening at the capitol. 


If you want to hear more about what happened this week at the capitol, download my free podcast covering what went on this week in Saint Paul. I will be releasing these weekly to keep you up to date on everything happening at the capitol. 

The Omnibus Podcast


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If you have any questions regarding COVID-19, please don’t hesitate to contact me or my office. We are still attempting to provide regular contact remotely so if you have other needs, please email my Legislative Assistant, Grayson, at

Watch the Minnesota House on Public TV

House Streaming Website

Also you can watch committees and Floor Sessions on YouTube.