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Letters to the editor: Franke should be straight with constituents; Franke, Jurgens helped provide relief

Franke should be straight about his tax credit bill

I would like to point out state Rep. Keith Franke recently wrote about a bill he authored known as HF270, a veterans' jobs tax credit bill. What he failed to mention is that the same bill was introduced twice in the 2015-16 legislative biennium. The first was HF10 by Rep. Anna Wills. The second was HF125 by Rep. Bob Dettmer, and Dettmer is also a co-sponsor of this bill by Franke. These bills also have both Democratic and Republican sponsors on them as well. The only difference is that these bills do not include the word military, which the Franke bill does. A similar bill also was introduced by Wills in 2013.

Therefore, I insist that Franke does not take credit for other people's work and be more forward with constituents on the truth.

William Cory Labovitch

South St. Paul

Labovitch is outreach director for Senate District 54 DFL Party.

Franke, Jurgens helped provide relief

South Washington County's new state representatives, Tony Jurgens and Keith Franke, came ready to roll up their sleeves and get to work on fixing Minnesota's health care crisis. As the chief author of the Health Care Emergency Aid and Access bill, I wanted to write to thank Franke and Jurgens for their support of the bill, which passed the House and Senate on strong bipartisan votes. Legislators know that health care has been on the minds of many Minnesota families, and I'm pleased to report we've delivered in the first month of session. Help is on the way.

The bill will mean relief for thousands of Minnesotans struggling with skyrocketing premiums. The discount will be applied automatically to future bills for those who are eligible and is retroactive to Jan. 1. Perhaps more importantly, the bill includes a Republican-led measure to preserve care for Minnesotans receiving life-saving treatments. It also includes key reforms that will increase options for farmers and small businesses, improve consumer protections by ending surprise billing and making rates available earlier, and bring more competition to the individual market.

Gov. Mark Dayton signed the bill into law shortly after it was passed, and I believe it's a positive sign of things to come. With this relief bill passed and signed, it's now time to turn our attention to longer-term reforms to fix our health care crisis into the future. We know we have to make serious changes so we don't find ourselves in this situation a year from now. I'm grateful that Franke and Jurgens supported efforts to provide relief and the important first steps to increase competition and choice moving forward, and know they are ready to work on long-term reforms so we can restore Minnesota's place as a health care leader in our country.

Rep. Joe Hoppe


Hoppe is chairman of the House Commerce and Regulatory Reform Committee.

Scott Wente

Scott Wente has been editor at the South Washington County Bulletin since 2011. He worked as a reporter at other Forum Communications newspapers from 2003 to 2011.

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