Early this morning, the House passed the Minnesota Police Accountability Act. This historic legislation aims to ensure all Minnesotans can feel safe in their communities by putting power into the hands of the people and neighborhoods that police officers are sworn to serve and protect, improving the systems that are meant to provide justice for everyone, and ending the unacceptable culture that is responsible for the death of George Floyd and far too many others. As I said in a speech last night, which you can view here, I was proud to vote in support of this bill.
The bills contained in this legislation were authored by members of the People of Color and Indigenous (POCI) Caucus, myself included. I carried a bill to create a duty for police officers to intercede when a fellow officer uses unreasonable force. Officers who fail to intercede or report wrongful actions will be subject to discipline by the Peace Officer Standards and Training (POST) Board. I also championed legislation that charges the Attorney General with prosecution of officer-involved deaths. You can find a full list of the proposed solutions here.
Unfortunately, Rep. Kelly Moller, Sen. Jason Isaacson, and I had to postpone the virtual town hall that was scheduled for today due to our ongoing legislative work. The meeting has been rescheduled for Sunday, June 28 from 4 – 5:30 p.m. In the meantime, please feel free to contact us via email or phone. Thank you for your understanding!
The virtual town hall will be held on Zoom, a free video conferencing site. To join us, you’ll need to enter a meeting ID number (984 8383 7887) and a password (336780). If you have any questions that you’d like us to address, please send them to email@example.com along with your name and address.
Last week the Legislature passed $62.5 million in grants for small businesses impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic. The bill, now signed in to law by Gov. Walz, includes $60 million from the federal Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act and $2.5 million from the Minnesota Department of Employment and Economic Development’s Emergency Loan Program. Under the bill, small businesses with 50 or fewer employees can receive grants up to $10,000. Priority will be given to Minnesota’s smallest businesses and those that were required to operate at 50 percent capacity or less.
Today we passed legislation to deliver $841 million in federal funding to Minnesota cities, counties, and towns. The cities within District 42B will receive over $6 million in relief if the Senate agrees to this bill. This funding will help ensure that local governments can continue providing the services Minnesotans need and expect. In addition to supporting local governments, the bill would help prevent veteran suicides and homelessness, ensure rape kits get tested, temporarily increase wages for personal care assistants who take care of vulnerable Minnesotans, and support our state’s child care providers.
The Minnesota Department of Education is asking parents to share their distance learning experiences as they plan for the 2020-2021 school year. The input you provide will inform the agency’s decisions and the guidance they provide to schools this fall. You can complete the Fall Planning Survey here.
Thank you to everyone who has reached out in recent weeks. Your feedback and questions help me to represent everyone better. Please don’t hesitate to reach out if I can ever be of assistance. I do appreciate hearing from you.