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Legislative News and Views - Rep. Mohamud Noor (DFL)

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Legislative Update: February 16, 2021

Tuesday, February 16, 2021

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Rep. Noor

Dear Neighbors, 

I hope you are continuing to stay safe and warm! This week I want to update you on some new legislation and conversations happening in the Minnesota House. 

First, I want to invite you to tonight's listening session with Attorney General Ellison.

Economic Justice Panel: Tonight!

During Black History Month, Attorney General Ellison is hosting listening sessions focused on issues most pressing to Black Minnesotans: education, housing, criminal, and racial justice.

All event will be broadcasted on AG Ellison's Facebook. Comment with your questions during the listening session.


Progress as Chief Author on Bills

The legislative process moves rapidly. I’d like to share a few updates on bills I have co-authored and pushed through the legislative process in the past few weeks. 

Legislation Requiring High-Rise Buildings be Retrofitted with Automatic Sprinklers 

Last week, I introduced legislation in the House Commerce Finance and Policy Committee to require automatic sprinkler systems in nearly all existing high-rise buildings in response to a fatal fire in the Cedar High Apartments two years ago.

Our community lost so much during the fire and we continue to reel from it two years later. It has been my priority to ensure health and safety for all high-rise buildings. My new bill will work to ensure this tragedy does not happen again.

We owe it to the families of those we lost in the Cedar Apartments, and to the firefighters who have had to respond to far too many of these incidents, to take action. Sprinklers are a simple, highly-effective tool that should be fully-employed in all high-rises, new and old. Minnesotans deserve to feel secure in their homes – we can help ensure they do by being prepared and avoiding preventable tragedy.

The bill, which passed on a 11-7 vote and will be referred to the Committee on Public Safety and Criminal Justice Reform Finance and Policy for further action.

Legislation Prohibiting Credit Information Use By Employers

This week, I presented legislation in the House Labor, Industry, Veterans and Military Affairs Finance and Policy Committee to prohibit employers from requesting or using credit information as a condition of employment for hiring, firing, or compensation determinations, or in any way that affects the terms and conditions of their employment. The committee approved the bill which was referred to the Judiciary Committee for further consideration. 

Can you imagine being denied a job because of your credit information, especially if you have been affected by the COVID-19 pandemic? This is truly an invasion of privacy. These violations disproportionately affect Black, Indigenous and other people of color, making it a progressive step towards equity protections for Minnesotans.

Getting Hospitality Workers Back to Their Jobs Safely

The 2021 legislative session is a new opportunity for lawmakers to respond to Minnesotans’ needs. House Democrats have proposed immediate actions the Legislature can take to help the Minnesotans who have sacrificed and risked the most to keep all of us healthy and safe. Our latest proposal is focused on the needs of our hospitality and service sector workers laid off due to the pandemic.    

Last Monday, we announced H.F 39, chief authored by Rep. Andrew Carlson, to help laid-off hospitality and service sector workers return to their jobs. It’s one of many immediate actions that House Democrats are proposing to respond to the needs of workers, families, and small businesses hit hardest by the pandemic. High-quality video and audio of this virtual press conference will be available here

Communities of color make up 71% of displaced hospitality workers, this legislation will ensure a peace of mind knowing they can return to their same jobs when the pandemic is over. 



Dr. Osterholm shared several concerns with the House Health Committee this week, including the emergence of new COVID-19 variants that could mean that the worst of the pandemic is still in front of us. He also stressed the importance of continued mask wearing, physical distancing and avoiding crowds, and discussed the need for individuals to protect their mental health. 

You can watch the presentation here.

Dr. Michael Osterholm also recently recommended a strategy he supports would be to move to a single-dose vaccination process where the second dose is not canceled but postponed to give older and at risk Minnesotans a chance to get vaccinated and receive the protections more quickly. No decision has been made on this possible strategy and the plan at this time remains for Minnesotans to get both vaccines.


Testing remains a critical part of our strategy combating COVID-19, and there are currently more than 20 testing sites located around the state, all of which offer no-barrier access to testing. Appointments can be made here.

Vaccine distribution got off to a slow start throughout the nation, but Minnesota is making improvements every week as we receive more doses from the federal government. A new online vaccine locator map is available to help Minnesotans more easily find and connect with local vaccine providers. This map will grow as the federal government sends Minnesota more doses. Another helpful resource for information about COVID-19 is  


Governor Tim Walz Announces Loosening of COVID-19 Restrictions

Last Friday, Governor Walz loosened restrictions on businesses. Effective Saturday, February 13 at noon, this new Executive Order takes steps to further reopen Minnesota’s economy safely, including:

  • Increasing the “not to exceed” capacity in restaurants to 250, while leaving the maximum capacity at 50 percent
  • Increasing indoor entertainment “not to exceed” capacity to 250, while leaving the maximum capacity at 25 percent
  • Increasing private events and celebrations “not to exceed” capacity to 50, while leaving the maximum capacity at 25
  • Increasing gym and pool “not to exceed” capacity to 250, while leaving maximum capacity at 25 percent, and reducing distancing requirement to 6 feet.
  • Allowing restaurants to stay open until 11 p.m.

Additionally, the White House recently signed a contract for 200 million more doses. The speed at which the state can administer shots is tied directly to the supply we receive from the federal government, so this will help more Minnesotans get vaccinated. Case counts and positivity rates continue to trend downward, too, so there are many reasons to be optimistic. Still, we can’t take our eye off the ball, especially with new, more contagious variants emerging. Be sure to continue wearing a mask around others, practice social distancing, and get tested if you think you need one.

MNSure Special Enrollment Period 

Minnesota's health insurance marketplace, MNSure, will be open for a special enrollment period, starting February 16 through May 17, 2021. Certain life changes like moving, having a baby, getting married, or turning 26 allows for the special enrollment period to occur. Minnesota residents and families deserve access to quality, affordable health care. It’s critical, now more than ever, for everyone to have insurance. Learn about how to enroll here.

Missing Money/Unclaimed Property

As a result of successful legislation in recent years that is now law, the Minnesota Department of Commerce has developed a secure site that allows Minnesotans to check on their unclaimed property. Common types of unclaimed property can include:

  • Dormant bank accounts
  • Uncashed checks
  • Unclaimed wages
  • Insurance claim payments or benefits
  • Stocks or bonds
  • Safe deposit boxes

If you, or someone you know has left a job or moved, this may be of interest to you! The Department is responsible for safeguarding the funds until claimed by the rightful owners. Check to see if you have missing money waiting for you here.

Thank you for the honor of representing our district 60B residents and families in the Minnesota House! Please reach out with any questions or concerns you may have about the state of our legislature.


Mohamud Noor

State Representative