Work is continuing at the Capitol as preventing the spread of COVID-19/coronavirus takes center stage.
AFSCME Day on the Hill was earlier this week. I was able to speak with several constituents.
Today, Governor Walz declared a peacetime emergency and unveiled a package of legislation to prepare for the COVID-19 pandemic and provide relief to affected Minnesotans. Many of these bills have already been introduced in the House, and we’ll be working closely with state agencies and experts to enact the measures quickly.
MDH released a series of recommendations designed to make person-to-person transmission less likely this afternoon. Their recommendations include canceling or postponing large events and gatherings, implementing social distancing measures at work, limiting nonessential travel, and more. A full list is available here. You can watch today’s briefing with Governor Walz and MDH Commissioner Jan Malcolm here.
We all have a part to play in preventing the spread of COVID-19 and keeping our neighbors and communities safe. Minnesotans should take basic precautions that can help stop the spread of coronavirus and other respiratory illnesses. Wash your hands frequently and thoroughly with soap and water. Avoid touching your eyes, nose, mouth, and face, and be sure to cover coughs and sneezes. Use social distancing as much as possible. And if you’re feeling sick, stay home.
You can visit www.health.state.mn or call MDH’s public hotline at 651-201-3920 for up-to-date and accurate information about COVID-19. The hotline is open from 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. daily.
Bills That I’m Carrying
Three of my bills received public hearings yesterday. One of the bills, HF 4311, invests more than $7 million from Minnesota’s Clean Water Fund in pollution control and water projects. Details about the projects that are included are available here. Another, HF 4180, modifies dry cleaner fees. You can watch the committee meeting where these bills were heard here.
Erin Rupp from Pollinate Minnesota joined me to testify in favor of one of my pollinator protection bills.
HF 1293 also received a hearing yesterday. This bill requires including caution statements on corn and soybean seeds that have been treated with neonicotinoid pesticides. The label would urge care when handling and planting the seeds and state that planting it could negatively impact pollinators. The intent of this bill is to protect the health of Minnesotans and pollinators. You can watch the hearing for it here.
Bandcake Breakfast Canceled
The Bandcake Breakfast that I mentioned in a previous email has been canceled due to concerns about COVID-19.
I’ll do my best to keep our community updated as I receive more information about our state’s response to COVID-19. If you have questions or concerns about coronavirus or other issues, please feel free to contact me.