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Legislative Update from Rep. Glenn Gruenhagen

Thursday, July 16, 2020

Dear Friends and Neighbors,

The governor has once again extended his emergency powers, so the legislature is back in special session this week. Session began Monday and is anticipated to run at least a week, with negotiations taking place between the House and Senate and a handful of issues like bonding, tax cuts, police reform, and supplemental budget spending.

Governor Walz has now had peacetime emergency powers for more than 120 days with no end in sight. While House and Senate Republicans have voted numerous times to end the peacetime emergency and return to regular, legislative order, the House Democrat majority continues to stand in the way and refuses to put up the votes needed to end the emergency.

Click here to watch the speech I gave during Tuesday’s floor session in support of ending the peacetime emergency.

House Republicans have a proposal that would authorize the needed flexibility for the Walz administration to address COVID-19 related issues while providing legislative oversight or approval. However, it remains to be seen if Governor Walz will agree to these badly needed changes to state statute.

I continue to be concerned about the placement of COVID-19 patients in nursing homes while still be able to transmit the virus especially when are hospitals have many empty beds and have spent millions getting ready for COVID-19 patients. The Walz administration continues this practice even though 80% of deaths in Minnesota are in nursing homes or assisted living. I will continue to oppose.

As for other issues, I am in favor of pursuing solutions that work and empower local officials. This includes school opening/operation, law enforcement policies, housing, and other issues that come before us this special session. Schools should open and local officials should be given the authority to address any safety concerns. One size fits all state mandates from a single person (Governor) is going to cause more problems than it solves for students, parents, and staff.

Finally, because of a 60-day post-session rule, I am unable to send out any additional email newsletters until November at the earliest. If you want to stay updated on the latest information about legislative sessions, I would encourage you to check out my official Facebook page

Although I won’t be sending out newsletters for the foreseeable future, you can still call or email my office if you need anything. You can reach me via email at rep.glenn.gruenhagen@house.mn or on the phone at 651-296-4229.

Have a great summer,

Glenn

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