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Legislative News and Views - Rep. Sondra Erickson (R)

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Legislative Update (5-11-15)

Wednesday, June 10, 2015

I was honored to lead the House in prayer before Thursday’s floor session


Dear Neighbors,

Early last week, the House passed its Agriculture Finance Omnibus bill. This piece of legislation, which passed with broad bipartisan support, will fund agriculture and rural development programs over the next two years.

Along with appropriations for the Department of Agriculture, the Agriculture Utilization Research Institute, and the Board of Animal Health, the $108 million in our bill would address food safety and help rural Minnesotans in a number of ways. Most notably:


  • Provide funds to all involved state agencies in order to better prevent and respond to the avian influenza outbreak that has devastated Minnesota turkey flocks


  • Strengthen production Ag research to improve yields and strengthen crops


  • Pay unpaid claims due to wolf depredation


  • Commission a livestock industry study to identify causes of growth or decline of poultry and livestock production in the Upper Midwest over the last ten years


  • Increase grants to Second Harvest Heartland so more milk can be purchased for food banks


  • Streamline food safety regulations between the Minnesota Department of Agriculture and the Minnesota Department of Health

Farming and the agricultural industry are incredibly important to the economic engine and social fabric of our state. Our bill continues to build on our rich agricultural tradition here in Minnesota.

On Tuesday, in an effort to support our turkey producers, members of the GOP Senate and House Rural Caucus grilled turkey burgers on the Capitol lawn. I was honored to partake in this event as we served over 500 burgers in an hour to legislative staffers, legislators, and the public. Despite the current avian flu outbreak, turkey remains safe to eat and I encourage you to buy turkey to help support our Minnesota producers.

Last Thursday was the National Day of Prayer. This is a day of observance, established by the United States Congress, when people are asked to turn to God in prayer. I was asked to give the prayer before the House of Representatives at the beginning of session. You can watch my prayer by clicking here.

There were a number of non-controversial bills that were approved by the House last week. As we move into the final week of session, much of our work will be taking place in conference committees where conferees from the House and Senate will be working out the differences between the two bodies and reach a final agreement on a budget.

I am proud of the work we have done in the House that will ensure that Minnesota continues to be an outstanding place to work, live, and raise a family. I urge you to contact the Governor and your Senator and encourage them to support the House provisions.

As always, please don't hesitate to contact me if you have any questions or comments about issues that are important to you. My door is always open. If you would like to schedule a time to meet, please contact my office at or 651-296-6746.


Have a great weekend,


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