Sunday, June 29, 2008

June 2008 Wrap-Up

If you just got my end-of-session mailing and are visiting this site for the first time, welcome! If you're looking for my campaign website, click here.

I'm switching to a monthly summary for June since the legislative session was completed in May and I'm out campaigning on a daily basis. I'm a stay-at-home dad this summer until 3:00 p.m. or so when I head out doorknocking.

Schedule: On Monday, June 2nd, I had a fairly large meeting among some health care experts on the issue of my bill HF3810. This bill might take a different form in 2009 if I return to the House. On Thursday, June 5th, I attended a fundraiser for the DFL House Caucus. On Saturday, June 7th, I attended my first state DFL convention, which was in Rochester. I had the chance to sit next to Congresswoman McCollum and have a lengthy chat about issues and politics. I was only able to stay from about noon to four p.m. On Monday, June 9th, I spoke on legislative issues briefly to the Lino Lakes City Council. I prepared a one-page memo summarizing legislative actions that affect the city, which must have been pretty informative because the council didn't say a word and didn't any questions. This is pretty different from other city councils in 53A, which have quite a conversation with me!

On Thursday, June 12th, I was part of a panel discussion at the annual workshop of the Association of Recycling Managers (ARM). ARM is a group of metro area recycling coordinators from cities and counties. I talked about what the legislature accomplished and didn't accomplish during the session for recycling, composting, and product stewardship. Later in the day I stopped by Bethel University, where Girls State was meeting. This is an annual meeting for high school girls where they kind of act like a student legislature. I met with about 15 students as an observer on their "job, energy, and economic development committee," where they were vetting two "bills." One was on funding for renewable energy projects for schools and the other was on the minimum wage. They had good ideas and we had a great conversation.

On Monday, June 16th, I drove to St. Cloud to meet with about 15 county solid waste officers to talk about the legislative session. These are the folks--mostly in Greater MN--who operate landfills and recycling programs at the county level. On Wednesday, June 18th, I joined several other legislators and staff and commissioners from Anoka County about future management of the Elk River Refuse Derived Fuel (RDF) plant. On Tuesday, June 24th, two other legislators and I attended an announcement in Eagan by Coca-Cola that they are putting ten diesel hybrid trucks on the road in our area this year. The trucks are more expensive but at current fuel costs the payback period is three years. They use one-third less fuel and have one-third fewer emissions. In the evening, Senator Rummel and I met with the Circle Pines City Council. We had a lengthy and healthy discussion of issues.

During the month of June I also interviewed with several organizations about possible endorsements for the my campaign.

Constituent contacts: Shoreview resident with a drivers' license issue; Circle Pines resident about parking regulations; Lino Lakes resident insisting on more oil exploration in the outer continental shelf; Circle Pines resident distressed about increasing insurance co-pay for MS patients; Circle Pines resident upset about insurance company response to recent hail damage; Circle Pines resident about statute related to collector license plates; Shoreview resident proposing a bus system that uses 694 and 494 to serve the suburbs; Blaine resident promoting more domestic oil exploration and doubting climate change; Shoreview resident against light rail; district resident against taxes and light rail but supporting nuclear power; Shoreview resident for more domestic oil exploration; Shoreview resident asking about 35W bridge reports; Lino Lakes resident about the Lino Lakes Police Department