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Legislative News and Views - Rep. Nels Pierson (R)

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Legislative update from Rep. Pierson

Thursday, April 16, 2020

Dear Friends and Neighbors,

Just a quick note with the latest news and notes from the House as we near the end of yet another week where issues related to COVID-19 dominated the headlines.

The House conducted a legislative session on Tuesday to address separate proposals to further combat COVID-19, establish an insulin affordability program and help get Minnesota’s economy back on track. 

The ever-growing list of executive orders issued by Gov. Tim Walz is becoming a concern for many Minnesotans who say his unilateral decisions are causing them extreme economic strain and also fly in the face of our system of government. At the same time, the health and safety of our citizens remains our top priority.

A resolution House Republicans offered on Tuesday sought to strike a reasonable balance by easing the governor’s Peacetime Emergency Declaration restrictions, while also keeping in place important measures to protect citizens, small businesses and law enforcement/front-line workers as the state’s COVID-19 response continues.

Again, we all share the common goal of protecting the health and safety of Minnesotans. We also need to move Minnesota’s economy forward by allowing people to work and earn a living. Businesses and families are heading into financial ruin and we need to start working on solutions so that we can get moving again. 

Data provided by the University of Minnesota shows that, by protecting the vulnerable and continuing to observe social distancing, we can begin the process of bringing our economy back. Let’s let that data be our guide so we can work on a balanced solution that prioritizes health and safety while also allowing us to avoid a sustained economic shutdown. 

The resolution we put forward is a common-sense approach that would help us get there. Unfortunately, it was blocked on a party-line vote.

The House did approve a couple of noteworthy bills on Tuesday, including:

COVID-19 legislation 

A COVID-19 package was approved, the latest round of steps the Legislature has taken to ensure Minnesotans are protected during the pandemic. This bill included a variety of largely technical moves to help struggling farmers, extend deadlines, allow greater use of remote participation for public bodies such as city counties and allowing people to apply for marriage licenses online. This bill also implements provisions of the federal CARES Act, including coverage of COVID-19 testing as part of our ongoing response to the pandemic.

Insulin package

The House also approved a bill designed to make insulin more affordable for Minnesotans, ensuring that insulin is available in emergency situations. This bill also makes certain that insulin affordability programs will remain in place and provides life-saving assistance for those in emergency situations.

Friday session

Another legislative session is set to take place Friday and, among other things, a bill is scheduled to be discussed that would allow bars and restaurants to sell sealed containers of beer and wine to go since they currently are under take-out only restrictions. It’s one small thing that can be done to add a revenue stream to businesses that are really feeling the pinch of the governor’s shutdown order.

Please Contact Me

Look for more from the House soon and, as always, I encourage you to please contact me with questions or opinions on any issue. You can reach me at 651-296-4378 or


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