Creating infrastructure is one of the key roles of government. These public goods, like roads, energy production and transmission, and broadband, are investments we all benefit from. As our state and world evolves, our laws need to keep up with the demands for changes to our infrastructure. Increasing transit access, creating green energy infrastructure, and ensuring internet connectivity across the state were priorities of mine as your legislator, and they will continue to be in the State Senate.
Transit expansion in the south metro has boomed in the past decade. I was a strong advocate for the Red Line extension through Apple Valley into Lakeville, including the unrecognized possibility of a skyway at the 147th Street Station to ensure safer access across Cedar Avenue. Parts of our community have been left out of the MetroMobility program even though they pay taxes to support this program. I authored legislation to address this, as well as legislation to expand suburb-to-suburb transit. I continue to advocate fiercely for increased access to transit in the suburbs, for those who cannot or choose not to drive cars.
In my first year at the legislature, I had the distinct honor of serving on the Legislative Energy Commission, and to join one dozen legislators from across the country to craft model language for our clean energy transition. I authored legislation encouraging solar panels on schools through state grants, creating standards for energy storage to speed up our public-private partnership in our energy storage technology, legislation to subsidize private solar panels on residential homes, and creating a program to increase the availability of new clean energy jobs and training. We know that our energy future is of the utmost importance. Seeing disasters like the collapse of Texas’ grid last year serves as a visible reminder that we must diversify and modernize our energy economy, and we need to do so rapidly.