As we grieve the loss of two of our neighbors, I’m holding the families and friends of Winston Boogie Smith Jr. and Deona Knajdek in my heart. Their tragic deaths, one at the hands of law enforcement, and the other by someone armed with a vehicle, are further evidence that we need to make some significant changes to our public safety system and to protect those who are fighting for justice. That starts with police accountability and better policies to protect communities’ rights to assemble, grieve, and protest.
Reforming Minnesota’s public safety system is our top priority as we enter the final phase of negotiations at the Capitol. House DFLers are working hard to overcome resistance from Senate Republicans so we can enact the systemic changes needed to keep all Minnesotans safe, no matter where they live or what they look like.
On Monday, Governor Walz called legislators back to the Capitol for a special session. After months of consideration and more than 600 public hearings, we’ve completed our work in several budget areas. Today, we began debating the final budget bills negotiated between the House and Senate on the House floor. Our goal is to pass a budget that invests in kids, families, workers, small businesses, the environment, and impacted communities before the end of the month. If you’d like to receive frequent updates throughout this process, you can follow my official Facebook page.
Governor Walz’s eviction moratorium has saved lives, and the eviction moratorium off-ramp we’ve agreed to will save livelihoods and prevent evictions. The agreement House DFLers recently reached with Senate Republicans will give Minnesotans more time to access assistance before the eviction moratorium is lifted. We know many people are still struggling to pay their rent and could be evicted if the eviction moratorium ends abruptly. To help keep people in their homes during this transition, we’re establishing a 3.5 month off-ramp for the eviction moratorium. The plan gives renters time to apply for assistance and prevents landlords from evicting tenants with pending applications.
Assistance is available for low- and moderate-income Minnesotans who are struggling to pay their rent or utility bills. If you were impacted by COVID-19, I encourage you to find out if you qualify. You can view eligibility guidelines and a list of documents you’ll need to apply by visiting www.renthelpmn.org and downloading the renter checklist. RentHelpMN is currently accepting applications from those who owe back rent, but all eligible Minnesotans will be able to apply at a later date. Assistance is available for landlords as well.
If you have any questions or if I can be of assistance, please feel free to reach out. You can email me at email@example.com or call 651-296-4200.