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Legislative News and Views - Rep. Zack Stephenson (DFL)

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Legislative Update: Commerce Policy Bill Passes House

Friday, April 19, 2024

Dear Neighbors,

For the last few years, I’ve had the privilege of serving as Chair of the Commerce Committee here at the House. In that time, we’ve ended excessive price hikes of medications Minnesotans count on to be healthy, took on predatory lenders, and reined in big tech.

This week, the House passed our Commerce policy bill. Below, you can read more about this bill and the policies to benefit our working Minnesota families, our kids, the elderly, consumers, and those in need.


Here is an update from the Capitol.

Protecting Kids Online

It’s undeniable that social media has massive impacts on our society, on our children, and in particular, our children's mental health, which has been a topic of great concern to members from both sides of the aisle. 

Included in the Commerce policy bill is my legislation to prevent social media manipulation and put some guardrails on social media practices that affect kids. This bill imposes new prohibitions and requirements on social media platforms operating in Minnesota, based largely on legislative recommendations in the Minnesota Attorney General’s February 2024 report.

Net Neutrality 

Net neutrality is the simple principle that internet service providers should give consumers access to all legal content and applications on an equal basis, without favoring some sources or blocking others. The heart of the net neutrality debate is whether the internet is an essential service that all people should have access to, like water and electricity, or a discretionary service. There is an incredible amount of commerce that is either dependent on or benefits from the internet, and many worry that would unreasonably manipulate internet service for profit. My bill is a step in the right direction, towards ensuring everyone has unfettered access to the internet. All people deserve equal access to the internet.

Protecting Children from Harmful Chemicals 

Also included in the Commerce bill is legislation to remove outdated language requiring dangerous chemicals in items such as tents and sleeping bags. Originally intended to act as a flame retardant, these chemicals have been proven to be both ineffective at fire safety and harmful to the health of children.

Long-Term Disability Insurance and Mental Health

The Commerce policy bill will require insurance companies to include a disclosure and notify potential policyholders or plan sponsors if a plan being purchased limits the duration of coverage for mental health or substance use disorder conditions. This disclosure must be acknowledged and that acknowledgment must be kept on file for a minimum of two years. 


More Consumer Protections

I proudly voted in favor of tw

o pieces of legislation that will protect Minnesota consumers from deceptive and unfair business practices by?ending junk fees?and?requiring ticket price transparency

We are all familiar with the frustration of buying a ticket to a concert, sports game, or other event and seeing extra “service” and “convenience” fees added that provide no additional value to consumers. DFLers passed legislation to require fair, transparent ticket prices and other important protections for consumers. Ending these practices is the right thing to do and will help Minnesotans plan and budget better in the future. 

Keep in Touch

Please continue to reach out anytime if you need assistance or have questions at or 651-296-5513.

It’s an honor to represent our Coon Rapids and Anoka families in St. Paul.


Rep. Zack Stephenson

Minnesota House of Representatives