To My Neighbors in Minneapolis & Richfield,
This past summer, after reflecting on the past 33 years as your State Representative and what I would like to do next, I decided that I wonít run for re-election in 2020.
I still love being your Representative. As Chair of the Energy and Climate Finance and Policy Division, I know I am doing exactly what I should be doing to best serve you and the next generation. Iím proud of the House Energy and Climate Bill passed by the House earlier this year.
I have been on the cutting edge of so many issues during my career and have championed clean air and clean water even when those issues were on the legislatureís back burner. For many years, there were just a few of us who worked on those issues along with us. But with your steadfast support, over the years we passed nation-leading legislation to get toxic mercury out of products. We created enforceable standards to protect groundwater. We created and funded the terrestrial plants and pests research center at the U to combat invasive species. We required the Minnesota Department of Health to replace its outdated, adult-based air and water standards with tougher child-based ones so toxins wonít affect a childís development or contribute to diseases like cancer. And with your support over all these years, we did so much more than that. Iím proud of all we accomplished together.
Now, thanks to Minnesotans who voted in 2018, there is a new and larger group of legislators who are already effective leaders for clean air and water and combatting climate change.
Thatís given me the opportunity to serve in a new way. I will not stop being an advocate or a mentor.
In my last year as a legislator, I expect to continue leading the effort to reduce greenhouse gases that are causing the climate crisis and help Minnesotans manage the destructive impacts that are already happening. I will also continue to push state agencies to meet their statutory responsibilities to protect drinking water sources. And I will continue to work on the water issues affecting our district. We were so fortunate last spring because the slow snow melt prevented what could have been massive flooding. Our soils are now saturated with water and it seems that there will be a very early freeze. Our watershed district cannot rely on luck again to prevent flooding.
I could not have been the kind of legislator I wanted to be without you. For example, I didnít want to take campaign contributions from PACs and lobbyists. I donít disparage those who do, but I wanted the complete freedom that comes with not doing so. You made that possible with your continued grassroots support and many small contributions. I hope you know your support has been essential to my successó and Iím so grateful.
Finally, thank you for having high expectations. I hope you will continue to do so. You have demanded substance from your legislators and Iíve tried to honor that expectation.
As always, feel free to contact me and come to Second Saturdays.