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

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Legislative Update: Paid Family Leave & COVID-19

Friday, March 6, 2020

Rep. Nelson

Dear Neighbors,

The week at the State Capitol saw several important updates from Governor Walz, as well as another impactful piece of legislation being passed off the House floor. Here’s a quick update from St. Paul:


Paid Family & Medical Leave

Similar to the bills we passed last week, the Paid Family & Medical Leave Act was a bill that was previously passed by the Minnesota House, only to be blocked by leadership in the Minnesota Senate. I believe every Minnesotan deserves the opportunity to bond with a newborn, care for a family member, or deal with their own illness without risking their paycheck, and that’s why I voted to pass this bill last night.


This shouldn’t be a partisan issue. In fact, it’s a topic President Trump spoke in favor of during this year’s State of the Union. This would provide Minnesotans with up to 12 weeks of leave, and would work similar to unemployment insurance. Workers with qualifying family events and medical conditions could apply for leave to take care of a family member or get medical attention for themselves. They would receive a percentage of their regular wages while on leave.

I hope the leaders in the Minnesota Senate can come to the table this year to talk about how we can deliver this level of economic security to Minnesota’s workers. You can read more about this bill and this issue here.


Minnesota is Prepared for COVID-19

COVID-19, otherwise known as the “Corona Virus,” has been in the news a lot lately, and this week Governor Walz joined legislative leaders and Minnesota Department of Health (MDH) officials to outline Minnesota’s preparedness for dealing with this virus.

Just a moment ago, the first case of COVID-19 was confirmed in Minnesota. MDH’s labs are prepared to test patients for the condition, and you can click here to visit an MDH webpage with specifics about what’s happening. Common sense practices are our best bet when dealing with this or any virus. Wash your hands, avoid touching your face, cover your cough, and if you’re sick: stay home.

You can watch Governor Walz’s press conference on the issue here.


Update on REAL ID

recently shared information on how to apply for your REAL ID, but new information from the governor’s office shows that only 13% of Minnesotans have received their REAL ID ahead of the October 1, 2020 deadline. We’re now being told that in order to receive a REAL ID by that deadline, Minnesotans will have to submit their application no later than June 15, 2020.

To save time and make sure you have everything you need before you visit a driver’s license office, you can pre-apply online at Minnesotans who have questions or concerns about the status of their license or ID card can contact DVS at or 651-297-3298. Include your full name and date of birth with your question in the email.


Stay Connected

As our work progresses on these and other issues, please feel free to reach out with any questions or comments you have on the legislative process. I’m best reached at (651) 296-3751 or I appreciate your input.




Rep. Michael V. Nelson