This week Minnesota reached another COVID-19 vaccine milestone with three million doses having been administered. As shots continue to go in arms, optimism grows that we’re making progress in defeating this pandemic. Still, concerns about virus variants must be taken seriously. While vaccine distribution increases, we’ve seen COVID positivity rates ticking upward.
Sign up for Minnesota’s Vaccine Connector to be notified about opportunities to get a shot, and please continue to follow safety protocols like social distancing, wearing a mask around others, and getting a test if you feel you need one.
Momentum continues to increase for a proposal to comprehensively update Minnesota’s criminal sexual conduct code, a bill of which I’m proud to be chief author. The current law has numerous loopholes and other roadblocks for survivors to receive justice. You may have heard about a recent Minnesota Supreme Court decision stating the law’s definition of “mental incapacitation” didn’t apply to a victim who voluntarily consumed alcohol. This week we held a bipartisan press conference – which KARE 11 highlighted here – along with survivors, advocates, and law enforcement to urge lawmakers to adopt this critical legislation. The law had previously earned approval from the House Public Safety and Judiciary committees, and I’m pleased to learn the Senate’s Judiciary Committee adopted nearly all of the legislation this week. Additionally, Sheyla’s Law – my legislation to reform the investigation of sexual assault allegations from and about members of the Minnesota National Guard – is moving forward in the Senate as well.
We’re not over the finish line yet, but this week was a significant one as our efforts to lift up survivors and deliver justice continue.
The lion’s share of our attention at the Capitol is building a new two-year state budget. House DFLers have put forth a budget foundation that will help Minnesotans not only rebound from the difficulties they’ve experienced during the pandemic, but enable them to succeed and thrive once we’ve moved past this challenging chapter. It also recognizes that the pandemic hasn’t impacted everyone equally and we need to prioritize those who have experienced the largest brunt during this crisis.
Our budget includes critical priorities including:
Finance Committees for various issue areas are wrapping up work on their budget proposals, which will soon make their way to the House floor. To follow their progress, I encourage you to frequently visit or subscribe to Session Daily, an informative, nonpartisan resource from House Public Information Services. Of course, I also encourage you to be in touch with me to share your own priorities for the state budget.
The Minnesota Secretary of State’s office has released a list of openings on many state boards, councils, and commissions. There are currently 473 vacancies on panels responsible to regulate and guide policy regarding a wide variety of issues including pesticide management, motorcycle safety, insurance, assistive technology, health services, and many more.
These are great opportunities to share your expertise with the rest of the state. The full list, along with particular duties and information on how to apply, is available here.
I value hearing from you, and I hope you’ll be in touch with your input, ideas, or if I can be of assistance. My email is firstname.lastname@example.org and phone number is 651-296-0141. If you have neighbors, friends, or family who you think would find these updates valuable, please share this with them; they can subscribe here. I also encourage you to “like” or “follow” me on Facebook.
Thank you for the opportunity to serve you.