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Legislative News and Views - Rep. Dave Lislegard (DFL)

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Legislative Update – February 16, 2024

Friday, February 16, 2024

Dear Neighbors,

On Monday, we kicked off the 2024 Minnesota Legislative Session down at the State Capitol. Minnesotans expect and deserve an effective, responsive state government, with legislators who put people before politics and work effectively to improve people’s lives. This session, I’ll be focused on a host of “Range First” priorities for our communities in northern Minnesota.

Photo of Rep. Lislegard speaking with text:

Session Priorities

The biggest priority this year is a strong package of capital investments to make sure we have updated, modern public infrastructure including colleges, roads and bridges, water treatment plants, and so much more. This past fall, the House Capital Investment Committee toured our region including stops to learn about projects in Biwabik, Virginia and Chisholm. I’ll push for a robust, regionally balanced bill that meets the needs of our communities and residents.

Other priorities of mine will include solving the crisis facing our Emergency Medical Services providers, reforming our permitting and environmental review processes, and tackling our child care shortage. Many of these discussions will take place over the entire session. One priority I have that I hope we can wrap up soon is a solution to provide more clarity in the law regarding School Resource Officers. We’re working to ensure SROs can effectively do their jobs and provide safe learning environments for our kids, and I anticipate this will be one of the first bills the House passes this year.

Advocating in Washington, D.C.

4 pics of Lislegard & Hauschild w/ Sen. Klobuchar, Sen. Smith, USW, and group w/ the US Capitol in background

Just before the session, Sen. Grant Hauschild and I had the opportunity to visit our nation’s capital to advocate for our regions on issues important to us including delisting of the gray wolf from the endangered species list, permitting concerns for mining projects, the future NTEC gas plant, funding for Aurora’s Municipal Water Supply project, reimbursement rates for ambulance providers and more. We’re grateful to U.S. Senators Amy Klobuchar and Tina Smith; the U.S. Department of Energy’s Mineral Division; the President of the United Steelworkers, David McCall and Vice President Roxanne Brown; Legislative Director for the International Union of Operating Engineers, Jeff Soth; and Teamsters Legislative Director John Mataya for being generous with their time. While Congressman Stauber wasn’t able to meet with us in person, we appreciated the chance to communicate with him by phone. It was also an honor to have John Arbogast and Cathy Drummond from USW District 11 join us on the trip.


First Week Activities

Now, here at the Capitol, I’ve already had the opportunity to meet with Paul Peltier, the Executive Director of the Range Association of Municipalities and Schools (RAMS), to discuss legislative priorities and upcoming bills.

Rep. Lislegard & Paul Peltier look at a bill

Earlier this week I chaired the year’s first meeting of the House Property Tax Division, where we had a good discussion recapping our important work from last year delivering record investments in tools important to our region like Local Government Aid, County Program Aid, and Payment in Lieu of Taxes (PILT), along with our efforts to get property taxes under control and ensure communities can offer the high-quality services Minnesotans deserve, like roads, water, and public safety.


Throughout the session, I hope you’ll reach out to me to share your input and ideas. Email me at or call me at 651-296-0170. Also, if you don’t already do so, ‘like’ my Facebook page here. Remember: I work for you, and it’s my honor to have the opportunity to represent the Iron Range at the State Capitol.


Dave Lislegard
State Representative