Going into the 2021 legislative session, it is my goal to
ensure that the voices of our area businesses are heard, and
their needs are addressed. The most important item of focus
for me is ensuring that economic recovery and re-opening
our economy are paramount. Additionally, it is imperative
that the State of Minnesota conform to Federal PPP tax rules
to ensure that our struggling businesses are not heavily
taxed on aid that they so desperately needed.
While I have worked together with state legislators as well as
our members of congress to address some concerns facing
our businesses, I have also been grateful for the Minnesota
Chamber of Commerce Federation. As a Federation partner,
our voice is amplified, and our needs are heard in a grander
way at the State Capitol. There are 37 Chambers in the state
that make up the Federation and below are the priorities
that are being addressed this legislative session.
I am always ready to fight on your behalf. If you have needs
or concerns that are not addressed in our session priorities,
please do not hesitate to reach out and let me know. I look
forward to working for you.
MINNESOTA CHAMBER OF COMMERCE
2021 LEGISLATIVE SESSION PRIORITIES – MINNESOTA’S ECONOMIC RECOVERY IS IMPERATIVE
Local chambers represent economic vitality in their
communities. The Minnesota Chamber Federation unites
and amplifies the voice of local chambers by advocating for
policies to advance business in every corner of the state.
Federation partners represent more than 43 communities
and more than 21,000 businesses. The have worked to
promote pro-growth policies to the Legislature for more
than a decade, helping ensure that state lawmakers
understand the needs and interests of Minnesota’s diverse
and successful local business community.
Support employers and employees throughout the COVID-19 pandemic
The impact of COVID-19 on the statewide economy and
many sectors of the business community will have lasting
impact and the legislature must first “do no harm” and
instead pass measures that spur recovery and economic
growth. Businesses cannot sustain additional tax and fee
increases, mandates, regulatory burdens and other
measures that will further impede business recovery.
Tax reforms and small business grants to provide hard-hit
industries with immediate cash flow.
Enacting COVID-19 lawsuit liability protections for
Maintaining and enhancing connectivity, i.e. broadband.
Reorienting workforce development programs based on
immediate needs in a post-COVID-19 economy.
Maximizing the ability of schools to bring students safely
back to campus for in-person, full-time instruction.
Providing one-time targeted child care funding to meet the
needs of low-income and essential workers and providers.
Maintaining Benefit Flexibility
We are committed to providing the best workplaces for
employees. As demonstrated throughout the pandemic,
Minnesota employers adhere to strict safety protocols, labor
laws and workplace standards to maintain healthy,
respectful and inclusive workplaces. We support employer
flexibility in determining workplace wage, benefit,
scheduling and staffing decisions. Employers design benefit
packages to meet their employees’ needs. Employer
protections must be recognized, addressed and
implemented if Minnesota legalizes use of recreational
Ensuring high-quality, affordable healthcare
Health insurance is an increasingly important benefit,
allowing employers attract and retain talent in the
marketplace and ensure their employees stay healthy and
productive at work. We oppose additional mandates and
taxes that drive up costs and instead, urge the legislature to
improve coverage options including continued stability in
the individual market through reinsurance. We oppose a
government-sponsored public option which would lead to
significant financial impacts on providers and hospitals –
especially in rural areas and underserved communities and
increase costs for those with private coverage – whether
fully-insured or self-funded – because health care providers
will be forced to shift even more costs to these Minnesotans.
Current estimates indicate that the state’s transportation
revenues will decline by roughly $400 million in the current
biennium due to the reduction in travel and economic
activity associated with the COVID-19 pandemic. We
recognize that funding solutions to the near-term revenue
shortfall will be difficult during a time of General Fund
budget deficits, economic turbulence, and pandemic,
however we must maintain, and if possible increase general
fund revenues dedicated to transportation. Other funding
options include increased fees for electric vehicles,
increased tab fees (through a depreciation schedule
adjustment) and achieving more investment through
Energy and the environment
Environmental sustainability and economic
competitiveness, if done right, are not mutually exclusive.
We support achieving Minnesota businesses’ sustainability
goals while keeping Minnesota energy rates competitive.
We must continue needed progress on permitting
effciencies and streamlining.