Infrastructure, Springbrook Nature Center are priorities

State Sen. Barb Goodwin
District 41

As the 2014 Legislative Session convened Feb. 25, a main focus of this short session will be passing a bonding bill for much needed construction and repairs for our buildings, roads, and bridges. There are other issues at hand that I will also address, and I am confident about this legislative session.

I am hopeful that my bill to fund the Springbrook Nature Center here in Fridley will be part of the bonding bill. I think it’s important we invest in the center because it’s such a wonderful part of our community, bringing in 200,000 visitations each year and preserving a beautiful natural habitat.

As a member of the Finance and Commerce Committees and as vice chair of the Judiciary Committee, I am also committed to consumer protection and mental health initiatives and am authoring bills on these issues as well.

I have a bill to prevent insurers from raising premiums simply because a claim was reported but never paid. Additionally, I have a bill to protect homeowners by allowing them to collect attorney fees that accumulate as a result of faulty home construction work.

Ensuring the well-being of people with mental illness is also important to me. Prisons and jails should not replace mental health care in communities. Oftentimes, individuals end up in jail because of very minor offenses resulting from mental illness. This floods prisons and jails and fails to acknowledge the real problem at hand - people with mental illness receiving inadequate treatment. My bill would help create a diversion program.

I want to hear from you! I invite you to participate in a brief survey about legislative issues important to you. Please visit and use the ID Goodwin2014. Lastly, be sure to watch for notices of upcoming town meetings.

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