Poppe: New term offers new opportunitiesPublished 11:14am Wednesday, February 6, 2013
Over the past eight years, I have been proud and honored to serve as your voice at our state capitol. Each term in office brings new challenges as well as new opportunities to make a difference for our communities.
My fifth term has been no different.
In addition to my role as chair of the Agriculture Policy Committee, Speaker of the House Paul Thissen appointed me to serve on the Minnesota Agriculture Education Leadership Council and the Legislative Energy Commission.
The Minnesota Agriculture Education Leadership Council was founded in 1997 with the purpose of improving and restructuring agricultural education for students at all levels. The Council is composed of 16 members from various public, private, and governmental entities, including agri-business leaders, teachers, and elected officials. As both an educator and long-time advocate for Minnesota’s farmers and Ag community, I am excited to bring ideas to the table and share your views about how we can strengthen agricultural education programs.
Minnesota’s Legislative Energy Commission assesses the impact of the state’s energy policies on our environment and economy, such as monitoring our progress in developing renewable sources of energy and reducing harmful pollution. Our state’s energy policies have a big impact on rural Minnesota. We must balance our need for agricultural prosperity and growth with our desire to protect our environment—because future generations deserve to inherit the same, beautiful Minnesota we have today.
Both appointments and my role as Chair of the Agriculture Policy Committee will allow me to be a stronger voice for the priorities you and I share. For example, this week we will hear testimony on a bill I authored to extend the Farmer-Lender Mediation Act (HF251).
The Farmer-Lender Mediation Act, set to expire later this year, requires creditors to offer a mediator, or neutral facilitator, to help refinance debt before proceeding with foreclosure, repossession, cancellation of contract, or collection of judgment. Since 1986, this legislation has provided mediation services designed to produce solutions beneficial to the farmer, the lender and the local economies where they do business.
I hope this legislation will receive consideration by the entire House of Representatives in the next week. With the legislative session now one month old, we continue to make progress on bills that will have a positive impact on people’s lives.
As your voice at the state capitol, my most important job is to listen. Please continue sending me your thoughts and ideas about how we can grow our economy and put Minnesota on sound fiscal footing. You can reach me by phone at 651-296-4193, by email at firstname.lastname@example.org, or by mail at 487 State Office Building, 100 Martin Luther King Blvd., St. Paul, MN 55155.