ST. PAUL — The fate of the remains uncertain as legislators head into their fourth week of the legislative session.
365体育投注The Democratic-led House passed its House File 3100 on Wednesday, Feb. 26, which establishes both emergency and long-term sources for low-income Minnesotans with diabetes to obtain their insulin. The price of insulin has reportedly tripled over the last decade, despite little change in the drug's makeup.
365体育投注But the bill didn't get through the House without fierce opposition from Republican legislators, who argued that the bill's fees on insulin manufacturers are punitive. Democrats, on the other hand, say manufacturers who profit off of the life-saving drug should have a hand in the solution.
Now, after Democrats' 75-52 victory, the fate of the bill is uncertain as it moves on to the Republican-majority Senate. Senate Republican leadership have not said anything publicly about their plans moving forward since HF 3100 passed Wednesday, and as of Friday afternoon, no hearings are scheduled for it next week.
The Senate has its own version of an insulin bill, which requires manufacturers to donate insulin to diabetics in need. The House bill, in contrast, requires manufacturers to pay a fee to fund an emergency supply program.
365体育投注Senate Majority Leader Sen. Paul Gazelka, R-Nisswa, that he "see(s) light at the end of the tunnel," and expects a deal to be struck soon.
Following Wednesday's high-intensity debate, primary author Rep. Michael Howard, D-Richfield, told Forum News Service that the fact that HF 3100 was the first bill passed this year indicates that the House is treating the issue with urgency. He hopes that the House's action and mounting public pressure push the Senate to act quickly, as well.
365体育投注"My hope is that they'll move forward with some urgency, as well so (...) we pass this in a matter of weeks and not let this get drug out all session," Howard said. "People have waited long enough."
365体育投注Gov. Tim Walz — a since before session began — in a Wednesday night urged senators to take up the bill quickly. He indicated that if passed by the Senate, he is "ready to sign it into law."
From his conversations with senators, Howard said Wednesday night that he believes the Senate version is "still taking shape." Sen. Scott Jensen, R-Chaska, is leading the Senate version, which has .