Hello from St. Paul,
Yesterday lawmakers returned to St. Paul to approve more COVID-19 related legislation. It was a very different feel as I had to do my legislative business from the balcony of the House chamber instead of from my chamber desk. This was my assigned seat as we were spread out due to coronavirus six foot distancing recommendations.
LATEST COVID-19 BILL SENT TO GOVERNOR
This comprehensive proposal was approved on a strong bipartisan basis, and included everything from a loan program for small business owners, childcare components, emergency assistance for struggling veterans and their spouses, extensions for drivers' license renewals, and more.
I was very proud of the way both sides of the aisle worked together in a bipartisan way to make things happen during this crisis for our state. I am also happy with the checks and balances we added to the financial components of this bill. Though I totally agree with acting during emergency situations like this, I also want to make sure that any state spending happens appropriately and responsibly as we are using taxpayer money.
Earlier this month, we also approved $221 million in funding to assist with COVID-19 preparation and response. Thursday's approved legislation continues those efforts.
GOVERNOR ISSUES 'STAY AT HOME' ORDER
Governor Walz has announced a "Stay at Home" executive order, which will limit movement outside homes beyond essential trips until Friday, April 10.
The governor also extended the current closures for bars, restaurants, and other public accommodations under previous executive orders until May 1 and extended distance learning for schools until May 4.
So how does the "Stay at Home" order impact you? I know that a lot of you have questions about what this means for your business and day-to-day lives. I am including a link to the Governor's full order that explains all the details and provides answers to many of the questions you probably have. Click here to see the full order: https://mnhouse.gop/EO_ShelterInPlace
Here is a link to the Minnesota Department of Employment and Economic Development that lists all “critical” businesses that would remain open: https://mn.gov/deed/assets/naics-critical-list_tcm1045-424829.pdf. And another link with more information on business exemptions:
As always, I am available to answer any questions you may have. You can contact me anytime at firstname.lastname@example.org or by phone at 651-296-8216.