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

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Legislative Update (5-13-16)

Friday, May 13, 2016

Dear Neighbors,

This weekend is the fishing opener and I encourage you to visit Lake Mille Lacs to partake in this timeless Minnesota tradition. While walleye fishing on the lake is only catch and release this year, the area surrounding the lake offers endless recreational opportunities that are suitable for the entire family. Some of these opportunities and amenities include great restaurants, ATV and bike trails, two wonderful state parks, and campgrounds all around the lake. Mille Lacs and the businesses and parks surrounding the lake are open for business!

When traveling to the area, please keep in mind the road construction that is taking place on HWY 169 and HWY 27. For information on detours please visit MNDOT’s construction project website.

End of Session Negotiations

There is just over a week left in the 2016 legislative session and lawmakers continue to work towards an agreement on a handful of issues.

On transportation, I continue to support the House’s position that provides for a comprehensive roads and bridges package without raising the gas tax—instead reprioritizing already existing resources and revenue streams. Unfortunately, the Senate and Governor Dayton continue to advocate for a gas tax increase as well as increased investments in light-rail train boondoggles in the Twin Cities.

It is frustrating that DFLers’ default position on this issue is to increase the gas tax. Simply put, Minnesota already has the existing resources to fund our transportation needs.  

Governor Dayton and his staff are expected to prepare his first transportation offer this weekend and announce it Monday morning. As he prepares his proposal, I hope the governor remembers his words from December when he declared the gas tax dead.

As for supplemental budget negotiations, much of the education policy I helped craft that empowers parents and provides for reform of teacher licensure will be included in the supplemental education bill.

Finally, I remain hopeful that we will be able to pass a meaningful tax relief bill this session. Last year, the House passed a bill that would provide tax relief for middle-class families, college students, aging adults & veterans, farmers and job creators & innovators. This bill is currently in conference committee.

Deadlines usually produce results and I expect agreement on these major items to be reached sooner rather than later.

If you have any questions or comments regarding any of these issues, please make sure to contact me. I can be reached by phone at 651-296-6746 or via email at

Have a great weekend and good luck to anglers!


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