Northern MN lawmakers named committee chairs

With the DFL taking majorities in the Minnesota State House and Senate earlier this month, House Speaker-elect Paul Thissen and Senate Majority Leader Tom Bakk are announcing their committee structure and new chairpersons. Last week the following roster of chairs was announced. I’ve highlighted the northern Minnesota legislators who have earned these influential positions.

See the complete list below the jump


Rules and Admin: Sen. Tom Bakk (majority leader)
*Subcommittee on Elections: Sen. Katie Sieben

Capital Investment: Sen. LeRoy Stumpf

Taxes: Sen. Rod Skoe
*Tax Reform Division: Sen. Ann Rest

Finance: Sen. Dick Cohen
*E-12 Division: Sen. Wiger
*Environment, Economic Development & Ag Division: Sen. David Tomassoni
*Health and Human Services Division: Sen. Tony Lourey
*Higher Ed and Workforce Development: Sen. Terri Bonoff
*State Departments and Veterans Division: Sen. Tom Saxhaug
*Transportation and Public Safety: Sen. Scott Dibble

Commerce: Sen. Jim Metzen

Education: Sen. Patricia Torres-Ray

Environment and Energy: Sen. John Marty

Health, Human Services and Housing: Sen. Sheran

Jobs, Ag, Rural Development: Sen. Dan Sparks

Judiciary: Sen. Latz

State and Local Government: Sen. Sandy Pappas


Ways and Means: Rep. Lyndon Carlson

Taxes: Rep. Ann Lenczewski
Property Tax Division: Rep Jim Davnie

Higher Education Finance and Policy: Rep. Gene Pelowski

Education Finance: Rep. Paul Marquart
Education Policy: Rep. Carlos Mariani

Health and Human Services Finance: Rep. Tom Huntley
Health and Human Services Policy: Rep. Tina Liebling

Capital Investment: Rep. Alice Hausman

Environment, Natural Resources, and Ag Finance: Rep. Jean Wagenius
Environment and Natural Resources Policy: Rep. David Dill

Ag Policy: Rep. Jeanne Poppe

Energy Policy: Rep. Melissa Hortman

Transportation Finance: Rep. Frank Hornstein
Transportation Policy: Rep. Ron Erhardt

Judiciary Finance and Policy: Rep. Debra Hilstrom

Commerce and Consumer Protection Finance and Policy: Rep. Joe Atkins

Jobs and Economic Development Finance and Policy: Rep. Tim Mahoney

Labor, Workplace, and Regulated Industries: Rep. Sheldon Johnson

State Government Finance and Veterans Affairs: Rep. Mary Murphy

Legacy State: Rep. Phyllis Kahn

Housing Finance and Policy: Rep. Karen Clark

Government Operations: Rep. Michael Nelson

Elections: Rep. Steve Simon

Public Safety Finance and Policy: Rep. Michael Paymar

Early Childhood and Youth Development Policy: Rep. Joe Mullery

Civil Law: State Rep. John Lesch

Rules and Legislative Administration: Rep. Erin Murphy

As you can see, northern Minnesota’s Senate seniority (and having an Iron Ranger as Leader) has led to choicer spots on that side of the building. But a chairmanship is a blessing and a curse. You get more influence in one area, but also have to dedicate much more time to committee work than a whole-scale legislative agenda. It will be interesting to see who among the new DFL caucuses emerges as rising stars and who hovers on the back benches.

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