Sandra Masin: Representative Minnesota House 51A Representing parts of Burnsville and Eagan volunteer button contribute button

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Legislative Update - 8/13/2021
Posted on 13 August 2021

Dear Neighbors,

I hope you are all enjoying the last weeks of summer as we get a brief break from the heat and some much needed rain! Thanks to everyone who turned out for National Night Out / Night to Unite, it was a lovely evening and I enjoyed chatting with you.

Tomorrow, Saturday, August 14, 2021 is IndiaFest at the State Capitol Grounds in St. Paul from 11am to 8:30pm. IndiaFest is a joyful celebration of the rich culture, traditions and heritage of India. There will be a lot of fun activities for the whole family, so be sure to stop by if you can!

Back to School Preparation
As you get ready for the school year here are some tips to keep in mind:

  • Many school supply purchases can qualify for K-12 tax benefits in your 2021 Minnesota tax return. Save receipts from these purchases, including distance learning needs, and claim the K-12 Education Credit or Subtraction. You can learn more about these tax returns here. Here are some expenses that qualify for refunds:
    • Paper and notebooks
    • Pens and pencils
    • Non-religious textbooks
    • Rental or purchases of educational equipment, including musical instruments
    • Computer hardware (including hotspots, modems, and routers) and educational software (up to $200 for the subtraction and $200 for the credit)
    • After-school tutoring and educational summer camps taught by a qualified instructor
  • Now is time for children 12 and older to get the COVID-19 to ensure we have a safe return to in person classes. Here is a guidance document from MDH's website reflecting CDC's best practice recommendations for implementing layered prevention strategies to provide the best protection. Proactive COVID-19 prevention strategies remain critical to protect people - including students, teachers, and staff - who are not fully vaccinated or who have certain medical conditions, especially in areas of moderate-to-high community transmission levels. Here are some key guidance points:
    • All people ages 12 years and older should get vaccinated for COVID-19 before returning to in-person school, sports, or other activities to protect themselves and people around them who cannot get vaccinated. Talk to a health care provider or Find Vaccine Locations near you.
    • All students, teachers, staff, and visitors in school buildings should wear masks indoors regardless of vaccination status.
    • Schools should maintain at least 3 feet of physical distance between students within classrooms whenever possible. When it is not possible to maintain 3 feet of distance between students, it is especially important to layer other prevention strategies.
    • Students, teachers, and staff should stay home if they are feeling sick and should contact a health care provider for testing and care.
    • Students, teachers, and staff who have been fully vaccinated do not need to stay home even if they have had recent close contact with a confirmed case so long as they remain asymptomatic and do not test positive. Follow CDC testing guidance for anyone exposed to a confirmed case.
    • People who are not fully vaccinated and returning to in-person school, sports, or extracurricular activities (and their families) should get tested regularly for COVID-19 according to CDC guidance.
    • Schools should encourage ventilation, contact tracing in combination with isolation and quarantine, handwashing, respiratory etiquette, cleaning, and disinfection as important layers of prevention.

Vaccination Incentives
If you haven't gotten your vaccine yet you can now get $100 for getting vaccinated! Over 30,000 Minnesotans have gotten vaccinated in 5 days since this incentive became available. Learn more here.

Stay in Touch  Please feel free to reach out to me by email at rep.sandra.masin@house.mn or by phone at 651-296-3533. If you have a friend, neighbor, or relative who wants to receive updates about the Legislature, let them know they can subscribe to my email list here. You can also follow me on Facebook. It's an honor to represent our community. Please stay in touch.

Sincerely,

Sandra Masin
State Representative
 


Legislative Session Adjourned! July 2021
Posted on 9 July 2021

Dear Neighbors,

I hope you and your family had a safe and relaxing July 4th! The mild weather we've had has been perfect for getting out into our community and exploring all our state has to offer.

Session Ends   The House finally adjourned for the session early on July 1st. We negotiated until the very end to make sure we could pass the best final budget for all of Minnesota. Due to the nature of our divided legislature we had to make compromises so we weren't able to get everything through that our communities need. However, the House DFL managed to accomplish a great deal this year while preventing many bad provisions from passing, like cuts to our schools.

Here are brief summaries on what was included in each bill:

•  Environment and Natural Resources:
We need to create more opportunities for children and young adults to get outdoors and participate in recreational activities. Investments in programs like No Child Left Inside, can help inspire the next generation of Minnesotans to appreciate and enjoy the great outdoors.

•  K-12:
We made sure to increase funding for students at a level not seen in 15 years. This will ensure that every student receives the funding they deserve no matter their address or background. We also provide mental health services to ensure that students and staff receive the help and care they deserve.

•  Public Safety and Judiciary:
This is one of the more disappointing bills as it doesn't include some of the most pressing public safety accountability measures. However it does include reforms to no knock warrants, sign and release warrants, and changes to mental health responses. All of which will help to reduce deadly police encounters. On the Judiciary side of the bill there are several reforms decriminalize poverty, update our sexual assault laws, and will help bring justice for Indigenous Minnesotans.

•  Taxes:
The final tax bill contains several provisions which will benefit the average Minnesotan. Some important provisions include youth homeless funding, PPP loan forgiveness for our local businesses, and forgiveness on student loan payments.

•  Legacy:
Invests proceeds from the voter-approved constitutional amendment to protect and enhance Minnesota's outdoor heritage, clean water, arts and cultural heritage, and parks and trails. This year's bill includes water safety grants, including funding to provide scholarships to low-income and at-risk children. Here are some tips from the Minnesota DNR so everyone can enjoy the water safely on a boat, at the beach, or in a pool.

•  Health and Human Services:
This bill successfully secured resources to close many gaps in our system through expanded coverage for pregnant women, new coverage for dental services, enhanced services for children with asthma, and increased diversity within our mental health workforce.

•  Climate & Energy:
Wind is currently the cheapest form of electricity. Solar, which is already cheaper than any new fossil fuel plants, is expected to be cheaper than wind within five years. House DFLers are committed to helping Minnesotans save money on their energy bills and take advantage of potential savings. For example, we secured funding to install solar energy panels on schools.

•  Commerce:
The final Commerce budget tackles the record-high catalytic converter theft problem with a series of reforms to deter theft and keep Minnesotans' cars intact. This bill gives law enforcement, scrap metal dealers, and consumers ways to deter thefts by adding identification numbers and unique markers to make it harder to sell stolen parts. Minnesotans want action like this, not just bigger penalties.

•  Transportation:
Minnesota students deserve to be safe traveling to and from school. Our bill prioritizes student safety by investing in safe routes to school to assist cities, counties, and towns statewide with local infrastructure projects to help ensure that students can safely walk or bike to school. The budget also contains grants to install cameras on school bus stop arms to help catch and enforce stop arm violations.

•  Housing:
Minnesota has one of the nation's highest rates of homeownership, but also one of the largest ownership disparities between white and BIPOC households. Our housing investments will help to close the gap, allowing more Minnesotans to purchase homes and put down roots. If you are behind on rent or utilities, apply for aid here.

•  Jobs and Labor:
Too many Minnesotans are struggling with the high cost of child care, which poses a significant barrier to getting a job and having economic security. DFLers led the way to secure a historic investment to expand access to affordable child care across the state.

•  Higher Education:
Makes investments to ensure students can recover from the unprecedented challenges they've faced over the past year. It will help ensure young people have the ability to thrive as they move forward in the post-pandemic workforce.

•  Agriculture:
Invests in emerging farmer outreach, urban and youth agriculture, the Farm-to-School initiative, Good Food Access, and funding for environmentally-friendly production practices and conservation techniques.

Stay in Touch  Please feel free to reach out to me by email at rep.sandra.masin@house.mn or by phone at 651-296-3533. If you have a friend, neighbor, or relative who wants to receive updates about the Legislature, let them know they can subscribe to my email list here. You can also follow me on Facebook. It's an honor to represent our community. Please stay in touch.

Sincerely,

Sandra Masin
State Representative
 


Bipartisan Budget Bills Pass!
Posted on 25 June 2021

Dear Neighbors,

The Legislature convened a special session on June 14 and we have been hard at work in final negotiations crafting bipartisan budget bills that will fund our state for the next two years. Details on the overall budget agreement and where the Legislature currently is in the process can be found here.

Current Status of Budget Bills
We've reached bipartisan compromise on most budget areas. Here are the bills we have passed thus far.

  • Higher Education: Makes investments to ensure students can recover from the unprecedented challenges they've faced over the past year. It will help ensure young people have the ability to thrive as they move forward in the post-pandemic workforce.
  • Agriculture: Invests in emerging farmer outreach, urban and youth agriculture, the Farm-to-School initiative, Good Food Access, and funding for environmentally-friendly production practices and conservation techniques.
  • Legacy: Invests proceeds from the voter-approved constitutional amendment to protect and enhance Minnesota's outdoor heritage, clean water, arts and cultural heritage, and parks and trails. This year's bill includes water safety grants, including funding to provide scholarships to low-income and at-risk children. Here are some tips from the Minnesota DNR so everyone can enjoy the water safely on a boat, at the beach, or in a pool.
  • Climate & Energy: Wind is currently the cheapest form of electricity. Solar, which is already cheaper than any new fossil fuel plants, is expected to be cheaper than wind within five years. House DFLers are committed to helping Minnesotans save money on their energy bills and take advantage of potential savings. For example, we secured funding to install solar energy panels on schools.
  • Commerce: The final Commerce budget tackles the record-high catalytic converter theft problem with a series of reforms to deter theft and keep Minnesotans' cars intact. This bill gives law enforcement, scrap metal dealers, and consumers ways to deter thefts by adding identification numbers and unique markers to make it harder to sell stolen parts. Minnesotans want action like this, not just bigger penalties.
  • Transportation: Minnesota students deserve to be safe traveling to and from school. Our bill prioritizes student safety by investing in safe routes to school to assist cities, counties, and towns statewide with local infrastructure projects to help ensure that students can safely walk or bike to school. The budget also contains grants to install cameras on school bus stop arms to help catch and enforce stop arm violations.
  • Housing: The eviction moratorium put in place by Governor Walz saved lives. Now, as Minnesota begins to bounce back from the pandemic, our compromise housing budget ensures that those who struggled with housing during the pandemic will still have a safe and secure roof over their heads. If you are behind on rent or utilities, apply for aid here.
  • Jobs and Labor: Too many Minnesotans are struggling with the high cost of child care, which poses a significant barrier to getting a job and having economic security. DFLers led the way to secure a historic investment to expand access to affordable child care across the state.
  • Environment and Natural Resources: We need to create more opportunities for children and young adults to get outdoors and participate in recreational activities. Investments in programs like No Child Left Inside can help inspire the next generation of Minnesotans to appreciate and enjoy the great outdoors.
There are a couple budget bills that have been agreed to but still need to be heard, debated, and discussed on the House Floor. So far, bipartisan agreement has been reached on the following bills:
  • Taxes
  • Health and Human Services
  • Bonding
Public Safety still remains open but we expect it will be wrapped up soon to avoid government shutdown.

Pollinator Week
It's Pollinator Week! This week recognizes the critical role pollinators play in our everyday lives. Our pollinators are in increasing danger and we have to each do our part in helping them recover. Consider planting a native pollinator plant or reducing your use of pesticides this week! You can read more about this week here.



Public Comment Period for MnDOT
The Minnesota Department of Transportation (MnDOT) is currently taking public comments on the draft 2022-2025 State Transportation Improvement Program (STIP). MnDOT welcomes these comments (written, e-mail or telephone) through June 30. I encourage you to provide your input on the important transportation investments that MnDOT will use through 2025. It's important that we all participate to ensure that our transportation system serves everyone.

Stay in Touch
Please feel free to reach out to me by email at rep.sandra.masin@house.mn or by phone at 651-296-3533. If you have a friend, neighbor, or relative who wants to receive updates about the Legislature, let them know they can subscribe to my email list here. You can also follow me on Facebook here. It's an honor to represent our community. Please stay in touch.

Sincerely,

Sandra Masin
State Representative
 


Legislator of Distinction
Posted on 20 September 2019

We just found out!!!

The League of Minnesota Cities recently named Rep. Sandy Masin me as a Legislator of Distinction. Thank you to the League for honoring Rep. Masin in such a great way and recognize her hard work.

This award is given to lawmakers who successfully work with local officials to meet the unique needs of their community.

More information about the award is available here.
 


Sandra Masin's Family

About Sandra Masin

A mother of three grown children, with more than twenty years of engagement in local politics and community events, Sandra is well known to many. If you haven't yet met Sandra, click here to find out more...


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The PRIMARY Election will be held on August 11, 2020. It is important that you vote on this date to affirm your choice of Sandra Masin and assure that she can be a candidate in the GENERAL election in November.
The 2021 GENERAL Elections will be held on November 2, 2021.
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