It’s been a busy week at the Capitol! With less than a month remaining in the 2022 legislative session, lawmakers are focused on using our state’s historic budget surplus to improve the lives of Minnesotans.
Supporting Our Students
House DFLers have passed several bills recently, including a supplemental budget for E-12 Education. This budget will help meet students’ academic and emotional needs and set our youngest Minnesotans up for success in school and in life. It contains funding for mental health resources, English Language Learner and Special Education programs, and early learning scholarships for more than 20,000 children. If you’d like to learn more about it, you can view a fact sheet here.
Providing Public Safety and Justice for All
We passed a Public Safety and Judiciary budget two weeks ago. It provides resources that law enforcement, local governments, and communities need to address crime. We’re investing in expedited funding for places with the highest crime rates, Local Community Innovation Grants, and much more. You can find details here.
Several bills I authored are included in this budget, including measures that:
Strengthening Health Care
Last Tuesday, we passed a Health and Human Services bill to make health care more accessible, reduce costs, and rebuild our health care workforce. Notable provisions in this bill include caps on co-pays for insulin and other life-saving medications, pay increases for people who help elderly Minnesotans and Minnesotans with disabilities live the way they choose, and help for families and individuals who are living in poverty. More information is available here.
Protecting Reproductive Rights
Last week, we received the shocking news that the U.S. Supreme Court is poised to end the constitutional right to abortion – a precedent that’s been in place for nearly 50 years. It’s a frightening infringement on our liberty and well-established reproductive freedoms. We must raise our voices in this moment.
Democrats in the Minnesota House and Governor Walz will never allow extreme politicians to gut Minnesotans’ abortion rights. My colleagues and I blocked two anti-choice amendments that Republicans brought to the House floor on Wednesday.
Connecting with Minnesotans
I recently had a chance to tour the Episcopal Homes, a nonprofit organization that provides a continuum of senior living in St. Paul. The location I visited had two nursing homes, an assisted living facility, a memory care facility, and five independent living facilities. The reimbursement method our state uses is making it difficult for these facilities to continue operating. We need to make changes to support these facilities.
I also had an opportunity to learn about the work of the Redemption Project. This organization partners with corporations to find meaningful employment opportunities and mentors for people with past convictions.
I met with staff from the Norway House recently. This organization is a destination for contemporary Norwegian art and ideas and a hub for cultivating Norwegian and pan-Nordic government and business relations. I’m proud to be a co-author of legislation to support it.
If you have any questions or feedback you’d like to share with me, please don’t hesitate to reach out. You can contact me by email at email@example.com or call (651) 296-8799.
Kaohly Vang Her