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Legislative News and Views - Rep. Athena Hollins (DFL)

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Legislative Update 04.29.2024

Monday, April 29, 2024

Dear Neighbors,   

As we enter the final stretch of the 2024 legislative session, I'm proud of the progress we've made together toward building a stronger Minnesota for working families. We're committed to securing fair wages, strengthening consumer and child protections, affordable healthcare, housing stability and investments that empower our communities.     

There is still a great deal of work ahead of us, but together, we have a significant responsibility to empower Minnesotans with the resources they need to thrive. I'm committed to working tirelessly alongside my colleagues to deliver these important results. 

Keeping you informed: Here are some recent developments from the Capitol.     

Post-Legislative Session Town Hall 

Save the date! I will be hosting a formal end-of-session Town Hall meeting on Tuesday, May 28, 2024, at the North Dale Recreation Center. We will discuss the historic 2023 legislative session and inform residents about the progress of the 2024 session, receive feedback, and field questions from constituents.          

Here are the details:   

Time: 6:00 PM to 7:30 PM  

Date: Tuesday, May 28, 2024  

Location: North Dale Recreation Center, 1414 St Albans St N, St Paul, MN 55117  

Everyone is welcome to this non-partisan town hall event. Unable to make it? Don't worry! I'll be hosting additional town halls across the district to connect with you and hear your concerns. Stay tuned for future announcements with specific dates and locations.  

If you have any question or need accommodations, please reach out to my legislative assistant at   

Recent Floor Actions  

Residential Shared Utility Metering  

Last week, the Minnesota House of Representatives passed SF 4579/HF 4558 on a bipartisan 82-44 vote, a bill I am proud to champion. The bill changes and replaces the law on shared-meter utility billing for residential rental units. It provides rights to tenants, including applying the cold weather rule to shared-meter utility billing, and provides for resolution by the Public Utilities Commission when tenants and landlords cannot reach an agreement in a dispute.  

By establishing clear regulations for shared metering, we can create a fairer and more transparent system for residents in buildings with shared utility meters. This will promote responsible energy use and foster a collaborative environment between tenants and landlords. Every Minnesotan deserves a fair and affordable home. Implementing strong regulations for shared utility metering in residential buildings is a key step towards achieving this goal. 

Minnesota has strong ratepayer protections to ensure that individuals aren’t forced into a tragic situation if they have trouble paying their utility bills. However, there are loopholes in these protections for people who live in multi-family homes and do not pay for the utility directly. In situations where different units share a meter, the protections only apply to a landlord, not the person living in the property. This gives some landlords the ability to evict a tenant without any of the normal housing and ratepayer protections in law. 

Tenants’ Bill of Rights 

The Minnesota House of Representatives passed SF3492/HF359 on a vote of 68-61. The 2024 Tenants’ Rights Policy Bill includes provisions to safeguard tenants’ right to organize, protect tenant survivors of domestic violence, clarify tenants’ rights to emergency services, prohibit rental discrimination based on public assistance, and more.   

I was proud to vote in favor of legislation that empowers renters and strengthens tenant rights. Every Minnesotan deserves to feel safe and secure in their home. This bill ensures they can voice concerns about dignified living conditions without fear of retaliation. 

Cannabis Policy 

Last year, DFLers legalized adult-use cannabis, along with the possession and growing of cannabis plants for personal, recreational use. However, buying cannabis legally at a licensed retail business in the state is not set to begin until early next year. The Cannabis Policy bill we passed is meant to expedite the process of setting up a good, legitimate marketplace for cannabis to displace that illicit marketplace that’s in place currently. You can read more about what the bill contains here.     

Commerce Policy 

We worked to pass the Commerce Policy Bill which focuses on consumer and child protections, debt reform, net neutrality, and more. The Commerce Policy Bill codifies previous Federal Communications Commission net neutrality rules into law. To achieve net neutrality, the bill establishes a set of parameters that internet service providers must follow to do business in Minnesota. Provisions in this bill also require health plans providing coverage for physical or mental health services to provide coverage for gender-affirming care as well and require that health plans consider gender-affirming care as medically necessary as long as it meets professional standards, guidelines, or medical practices. 

2024 Neighborhood STAR and Cultural STAR 

The 2024 Neighborhood STAR and Cultural STAR grant applications are now open! 

Neighborhood STAR funds capital projects in Saint Paul neighborhoods. Learn more: 

Cultural STAR offers grants for arts and cultural programming and organizations within Saint Paul. Details: 

Online applications for both programs are due Wednesday, May 15 at 4 p.m. 

Keep in Touch 

Please continue to reach out with any input, ideas, or feedback about the issues important to you. I value hearing from you, so call or email any time at or 651-296-4224. You can also follow my official Facebook page.  

In community, 

Rep. Athena Hollins 

Minnesota House of Representatives 

Legislative Assistant: 

Emma Erdahl