Dear Friends and Neighbors,

I would like to take this opportunity to give you a glimpse into what I helped accomplish during the 2011-12 sessions.

Every decision and piece of legislation I offer are guided by the list of five principles below:

L imited government
I ndividual responsibility
F ree market and fiscal responsibility
E xcellence in education
(The fifth principle is found in the first letter of each line above.)

It is an honor to serve each of you in the Minnesota House of Representatives.

Sincerely,

Sondra Erickson


2012 Legislative accomplishments

Rep. Erickson helped to grow jobs by voting to freeze business property tax
rates, offer tax credits for employers who hire veterans, fund job placement and
training programs and simplify environmental permitting processes.

Rep. Erickson helped control spending by voting against the Governor’s
budget that would have increased spending by 16 percent ($5 billion).

Rep. Erickson worked to improve education as the chair of the House
Education Reform Committee by voting to return control to local school districts,
empower parents and offer more opportunities for high school students.

Rep. Erickson worked to reduce taxes as she voted against tax proposals
that would have raised taxes by $1.8 billion, one of the largest proposals in state
history.

Rep. Erickson worked to limit government by joining with other GOP
members of the House to meet with business owners, local government leaders
and interested citizens to gather input to design effective state reforms.

Rep. Erickson worked to stop fraud and reduce the cost of health care
by voting to reform welfare and the electronic benefit transfer (EBT), promote
transparency and accountability for HMOs and require cost-benefit analysis to
ensure taxpayers receive positive returns on their investments.

Rep. Erickson voted to protect voter integrity by supporting a measure that
would allow voters to decide whether photo identification should be required to
vote. The state would also provide free IDs to those who don’t already have one.

Rep. Erickson helped to create a budget surplus of $1.2 billion, a $6 billion
difference from the inherited deficit of 2011.

Rep. Erickson helped lower unemployment by supporting policies that led
to a 1.2 percent decrease in Minnesota’s monthly adjusted unemployment rate, a
difference of roughly 35,000 jobs.


2011 Legislative accomplishments

Education – $13.6 billion, 14% increase

Reforms:

• Teacher and principal evaluation

• Ending integration funding in 2013

• Creating revenue for schools with < 1,000 students

• Repealing the Jan. 15 deadline penalty

• Repealing the 2% set aside for 2 years

• Creating early ed scholarships

Health and Human Services – $11.3 billion, 11% increase

Reforms:

• Repeals the “sick tax” placed on visits to the doctor

• Puts names on EBT cards

• Pulls benefits from fraudulent users

• Creates vouchers for recipients to buy private health care rather than use a public program

• Increases funding for small rural nursing homes and pharmacies.

Environment/Energy – $252.7 million, 19% decrease

Reforms:

• Streamlining the state’s water management programs, which are currently done by five separate agencies.

• Getting the DNR out of competition with private tree nurseries.

Higher Education – $2.6 billion, 13% decrease

Performance benchmarks include:

• More students taking online courses

• Increasing completion rates

• Increasing 4-year and 6-year graduation rates.

• Places tuition caps on 2-year schools

• Increases funding for the Work Study Program

• Preserves Postsecondary Child Care Grant funding for parents getting a degree

Public Safety – $1.8 billion, 2.7% decrease

• Raises co-pays for prison inmate health care visits

• Save counties money by allowing them to reimburse medical costs at a higher rate

• Treats juveniles sold into prostitution as victims, not criminals.

State Government – $905 million, 2% increase

• 5% cut to all constitutional offices and major agencies

• 5% for public TV, 15% for public radio

• Consolidating technology

• Auditing state employee health insurance for eligibility checks

• Creating a system that reviews state employees on a pay-for-performance basis

Tax Aids & Credits – $2.9 billion, 4.9% decrease

• Increases in the Property Tax Refund program

• Estate tax reforms to help farms remain in families

• County mandate relief

Transportation – $126 million, 24.8% decrease

• Increases road and bridge funding more than $200 million

• Requires that light rail advocates disclose the total cost to build and operate new transit lines

Bonding – $498 Million

• $33 million for local bridges

• $10 million for local roads

• $20 million for conservation

Legacy funding

• $87 million for the outdoors

• $179 million for clean water programs

• $78 million for parks and trails

• $105 million for the arts

 
PREPARED AND PAID FOR BY THE COMMITTEE FOR ERICKSON, 1947 RIDGE ROAD, PRINCETON, MN 55371