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Legislative News and Views - Rep. Michael Nelson (DFL)

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State Government Finance Committee Releases Proposed Budget

Sunday, April 07, 2019

State Government Finance Committee Releases Proposed Budget

St. Paul, Minn. - State Government Finance Committee Chair Michael Nelson (DFL – Brooklyn Park) today announced a proposed budget (H.F. 1935) for the State Government Committee and the Elections Finance Committee. The bill includes measures to make Minnesota’s elections more secure and accessible, and ensure a complete and accurate U.S. Census count.

“Civic engagement is not a spectator sport in Minnesota,” said Rep. Nelson. “We consistently lead the nation in voter participation and stand on a strong history of ensuring every Minnesotan is included and counted in our society. Our proposal reflects a continued commitment to upholding those fundamental values.”

The budget also includes provisions to:

  • Unlock federal Help America Vote Act (HAVA) money to make Minnesota’s elections more secure and accessible

  • Provide grants to local governments and nonpartisan, non profit organizations engaged in census mobilization, as well as authorization for U.S. Census workers to access multi unit housing facilities, ensuring a complete and accurate Census count

  • Establish an “opt out” voter registration process for applicants for a Minnesota driver’s license, state identification card, or instruction permit; Applicants who do not decline would be registered following a review by the secretary of state to determine the applicant’s eligibility to vote

  • Provide free public transportation on Election Day

  • Provide early voting in all federal, state, and county elections, from 30 days prior through the third day before each election

  • Keep voters’ political party private when voting in a presidential primary

  • Eliminate the existing three-person cap on the number of voters a person may provide assistance to in a polling place

  • Establish a politically-balanced Redistricting Advisory Commission to draw and recommend new congressional and legislative district boundaries after each Census

  • Make permanent an executive order which established an Office of Enterprise Sustainability within the Department of Administration. The office is required to track and reduce the impacts of the state government on the environment

Chair Nelson can be reached at 651-296-3751 or rep.michael.nelson@house.mn.

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