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Legislative News and Views - Rep. Hunter Cantrell (DFL)

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Minnesota; Leader in the Midwest

Friday, April 10, 2020

Dear Neighbors,

Our legislature and executive branch are working diligently to ensure we are making the most informed decisions possible to save lives. Our ultimate goal is to restore normalcy in our state as safely and as soon as possible.

I know that people have questions about the disease modeling being used in Minnesota as it compares to other models that have been produced in other states. Minnesota is compiling data from multiple sources including those from professional, scientific, academic, medical, and hospital areas. These sources are analyzed alongside other models and data that are available, in order to provide the most comprehensive and accurate models to anticipate the impact COVID-19 will have on Minnesota.

No two models are the same. For those who would like to learn more about the data and modeling being used to guide decision making in Minnesota, the Minnesota Department of Health and the University of Minnesota School of Public Health will be holding a media briefing Friday April 10th, at 11am, during which they will provide an overview of COVID-19 modeling in our state.

Here is a great graph that illustrates how Minnesota compares to our other midwestern in terms of COVID-19 case per million residents. Minnesota is clearly leading the way, and working hard to successfully flatten the curve.

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Governor Executive Order Updates

The Governor and his Commissioners recently gave us a complete update on where Minnesota stands in the fight against COVID-19. Here are some highlights:

  • Population-wide social distancing, and the sacrifice of Minnesotans, are buying Minnesota critical time to build our hospital capacity, obtain ventilators/PPE, and prepare for a surge in hospitalizations in the coming weeks.
  • The "peak," or the maximum number of people who will likely be infected with COVID-19, is likely to occur in July. Other countries that have been successful in combating the first wave of this virus are currently already beginning to fight their second wave of the disease. So we must stay alert and vigilant, fighting this disease will be a marathon, not a sprint.
  • The Minnesota Department of Employment and Economic Development has processed 384,000 unemployment applications since March 16th. The additional $600/week on top of base UI payment is now available, and will likely get to people within a week. You do not need to do anything special to request the $600/week additional payment, it will be deposited automatically into your bank account.
  • The governor and his commissioners continue to evaluate reopening non-critical business sectors for business/recreation that can be done safely, while abiding by the MDH/CDC guidelines. We all know that we need to develop a sustainable, long-term economic stability plan that is focused on the intersection of safety and financial stability. Stay tuned for further developments on this issue.

We all want life to resume to business as usual. That will happen much more quickly if we continue to abide by the stay at home order and social distancing guidelines. Given the available data, we are not out of the woods on this, but we are leading nationally in our efforts to stop the spread of this virus. Governor Walz is basing decisions on the available data and facts in making his determination to extend the stay at home order. I know that he wants to see our economy reopen as soon as possible, and that he wants to make sure that we do so in a smart, deliberate way that won't cost thousands of lives in Minnesota. We know this virus can kill people across the age spectrum, and independently of pre-existing health conditions. Nothing would be worse for our economy than the uninhibited spread of this virus.

This is a challenging time, but we are going to get through this. We will come out on the other side stronger, but only if we continue to do our part to protect our neighbors and loved ones. My colleagues and I are working constantly to address the needs and struggles that Minnesotans are facing during this time. I am always here to help you in any way I am able.

As always, I'm keeping everyone in my thoughts, and I hope everyone is staying healthy and well.

Keep In Touch

This is a difficult time for our country and our state. Please know that I am here to serve you every step of the way.

Please contact me anytime with questions, input, or ideas. You can reach me at my facebook page, by phone at 651-296-4212, or by email (preferred and quickest response) at  rep.hunter.cantrell@house.mn. Don’t hesitate to reach out if I can provide any assistance!

Sincerely,

Hunter Cantrell

Your Neighbor and State Representative

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