This year, in one of the nation’s only divided state legislatures, we worked together and found common ground to pass a two-year state budget that will lift up our communities and make our state an easier, better place to live for all Minnesotans. In the end, our budget is a bipartisan compromise. But we fought for investments in healthcare, housing education, and equitable communities that we can be proud of.
Too many students and families across Minnesota don’t have a safe, reliable place to rest their head at night. Housing is interconnected with nearly all areas of life - it is crucial for a person’s ability to hold a job, seek an education, and preserve their health. As a member of this year’s Housing Committee, much of my work focused on protecting tenants’ rights and expanding access to affordable and safe housing. And I’m proud to say that our final housing bill provides a historic $15 million in additional funding for housing programs over the next two years. While this bill is a good start, we have a long way to go to ensure affordable housing for all in Minnesota.
Homework Starts with Home is a collaborative effort and a community-centered approach to connecting families with direct housing rental assistance and improving collaboration between schools, housing providers, and services. We also dedicate resources to a homeownership program, manufactured home park infrastructure, and rental assistance for individuals with low incomes or mental illness.
The House DFL successfully worked to prevent Republican cuts to education, securing four times their proposed funding level, which would have set our schools further behind after accounting for inflation. Our budget makes investments in our teachers, students, Pre-K, and schools so we can prevent further cuts, layoffs, larger class sizes and higher property taxes.
The House DFL fought to freeze tuition at our state's colleges and universities, but the Senate would not come to the table. Minnesotans from all backgrounds deserve a fair shot at earning a quality post-secondary education. The budget does increase financial support for working families, increase funding for programs that support high school and college students on their path to graduation, provide grants to aspiring teachers of color and indigenous teachers, and establish a program to reduce textbook costs.
The House DFL focused on several health care priorities this session. We worked hard to ensure Minnesotans can afford their health insurance, prescription drugs, get the care they need when they need it, and to protect health care access for over a million Minnesotans. Our Health Budget was a bipartisan compromise, and we will not stop trying to pass legislation to bring down the cost of health care and make sure drugs like Insulin are available and affordable to those who need it.
Rep. Noor at a Care not Cuts rally
I look forward to continuing to work year-round to make Minnesota a better place to live. Join me next week for a town hall at Van Cleve Park! We'll talk about what we got done this session, and the long-term goals we hope to accomplish together!
This year’s budget is just one step on a longer road toward a more prosperous, more equal Minnesota where gender, race, zip code, mental health, and income don’t determine a person’s ability to succeed. It's an honor to represent you, and thank you for being engaged in our state government this session!
Rep. Mohamud Noor