It’s hard to believe we’re already through the first two weeks of July. I hope this email finds you well and staying safe and healthy.
Legislators gaveled in for a special session on Monday, which is still underway as we work together on a compromise that delivers additional COVID-19 relief and recovery measures, common-sense public safety reform that ensures we can all be safe, no exceptions, and a regionally-balanced and robust jobs and local projects, or bonding bill. The House and Senate Majorities have already found common ground on a public infrastructure improvement plan and I’m pleased to share that funding is included in the proposal to fix Spring Park’s aging water infrastructure. I’m cautiously optimistic the House Minority will join us, the Republican-led Senate, and the governor in getting this across the finish line for Minnesotans across the state.
Hire a Veteran Month
The governor has declared July “Hire A Veteran Month” in Minnesota to bring awareness to the extensive skills our veterans bring to the workplace – and to encourage employers to hire veterans not only this month, but throughout the year. About 308,000 veterans live in our state and 153,000 of them are of working age.
Because of the COVID-19 pandemic, the large annual Veterans Career Fair traditionally held in July has been postponed. Instead, CareerForce, led by DEED’s Veterans Employment Program, is hosting two virtual veterans events this month along with other partners and with the support of the Minnesota Department of Veterans Affairs (MDVA). You can learn more about these events here.
Minnesota leads the nation in self-response rates to the 2020 U.S. Census at 71%! This is great news, but we can do better! Our fair share of federal resources and representation in government are directly linked to an accurate count of our residents. If you haven’t responded to the Census, you can do so online here, by phone, or by mail. Check out our communities' daily progress on the Census Response Tracker.
Back to School Update
With still so much uncertainty around COVID-19 remaining, the House Education Committees recently discussed what school could look like in the fall – whether K-12 schools will fully reopen, if distance learning will continue, or if some sort of a hybrid will be introduced. School districts are trying to plan for all three scenarios.
The Minnesota Department of Education last week released the results of a survey asking Minnesota families about their experience with distance learning and their thoughts on the upcoming school year. They received over 130,000 responses, which showed that 64% of respondents selected that they would feel comfortable sending their students back to school. The results also showed significant concerns for public health remain.
A decision on the upcoming school year is expected to be announced later this month.
This will be my last e-update until after November’s election, as sitting legislators are prohibited from sending unsolicited communications like these during an election period. Feel free to email me any time with your input, ideas, or if I can be of assistance at firstname.lastname@example.org. You can also stay in touch by liking or following my Facebook page, and keep up to date by subscribing to House Public Information Services’ nonpartisan resources.
I hope you and your family enjoy the rest of summer. We all have a role to play to keep everyone safe and healthy amid COVID-19, so please continue to practice social distancing, stay home when you’re sick, and wear a mask around others.