Minnesota Senate continues work in spite of cold weather

Week four of the 2019 Legislative Session kicked off with a joint Senate and House press conference on the legalization of recreational cannabis. The issue of cannabis legalization is one that is moving fast around the country. Their goal is to secure a legislative hearing and to begin the discussion on this issue.

The Minnesota Department of Revenue started accepting tax returns on Monday, Jan. 28. The deadline for filing taxes is April 15.

The family of Steve Rummler, whose HOPE Network has been advocating to raise awareness and to pass legislation to address the opioid addiction crisis, held a press conference this week. They were joined by advocates and a bipartisan group of legislators carrying bills to address this crisis.

With the record cold weather, many committees canceled their hearings in the middle of the week. Despite the cold, committees still heard a continuation of overviews, reviewed ways the state can reduce TEFRA costs for families, and looked at proposals to strengthen sexual assault laws.

A number of groups held events and rallies at the capitol this week, including a Don’t Punish the Pain rally, Opioid Awareness Day rally, and MinnState colleges and universities Innovation Day. ABATE held their Annual Biker Day, and Minnesota Milk hosted an ice cream social.

The week closed out with the kick off of Black History month on Friday, February 1, to honor the contributions of African-Americans to United States history. The National Black History Month theme for 2019 is “Black Migration.”

Session will continue to pick up speed as legislation works its way through committees.