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Legislative News and Views - Rep. Emma Greenman (DFL)

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Legislative Update - July 30, 2021

Friday, July 30, 2021

Dear Neighbors, 

Happy Suni Lee Day! I hope you’ve been able to watch some of the Olympics this week. It was very exciting to watch Suni Lee win the all-around gymnastics gold medal yesterday! Suni made history by being the first Hmong American to compete in the Olympics, and she made us all very proud! And along with her teammate Grace McCallum, Minnesotans made up HALF of the U.S. women’s team that brought home the silver medal! 

There are over a dozen Minnesotans in Tokyo (check them out here!) competing in sports like swimming, basketball, track and field, wrestling, and more. It’s a privilege to have so many Minnesotans representing our country and their communities at the Olympic and Paralympic Games! 

Recent Events 

With the legislative session over for the year, I’ve been focused on connecting with neighbors and community members and attending as many summer events and local gatherings as I can. I’d like to thank those of you who participated in our virtual town hall last weekend! Rep. Jim Davnie, Sen. Patricia Torres Ray, and I are honored to represent such an engaged and caring community. If you weren’t able to join us, you can watch the event here.

Greenman 7.30.2021

I also spent time recognizing the important justice work of Jewish Community Action (JCA) last weekend. It was great to gather in person after months of talking virtually!

Advocating for Frontline Workers 

While the next legislative session is still months away, work continues at the Capitol. For example, the Frontline Worker Pay Working Group met for the first time this week. This nine member bipartisan working group is made up of appointments from the House, Senate, and Governor’s office. They're charged with listening to workers and working together to determine how to allocate the $250 million we secured to support the essential workers in our communities who face heightened risks of exposure to COVID-19. 

Frontline workers have risked their own health to keep the rest of us safe and healthy during the pandemic. They deserve to be compensated for their sacrifices and hard work. We have more to do in this area, and I’ll do what I can to ensure workers are at the center of the legislation we develop.

Taking Action on Line 3 

On Tuesday, I signed a letter urging the Minnesota Pollution Control Agency (MPCA) to suspend drilling along the Line 3 pipeline route due to the severe drought and excessive heat our state is currently experiencing. These conditions may compromise the ability of Minnesota’s waterways, wetlands, and marshes to effectively dilute harmful chemicals and excessive sediment, and they could make it more difficult to clean up spills and releases. We also asked the agency to investigate reported releases of drilling fluid at nine locations and to provide the Legislature with information about these incidents.

Laws Taking Effect on August 1

Several new laws will take effect on Sunday, August 1, including legislation that:  

  • Allows incarcerated Minnesotans who give birth to spend more time with their babies. Under current law, newborns are taken away from their parent after just 48 hours, interrupting critical bonding time and creating unnecessary trauma for both of them. This law permits the Department of Corrections to conditionally release pregnant and postpartum inmates for up to a year.  
  • Requires police chiefs to report all disciplinary actions taken against police officers to the Peace Officers Standards and Training (POST) Board. This will help identify patterns of behavior and keep problem officers off the streets. 
  • Requires the POST Board to create a list of approved trainers and courses for police officers responding to individuals with a mental illness or Alzheimer’s disease. 
  • Improve safety for inmates and staff in local and state jails. The Hardel Sherrell Act, named after a man who died in the Beltrami County Jail in 2018, is the first significant update to health and safety standards for correctional facilities in nearly 50 years.
  • Expands eligibility for housing grants in a natural disaster area to tribes and tribal housing corporations. 
  • Requires the Bureau of Criminal Apprehension to investigate criminal sexual conduct cases involving members of the Minnesota National Guard. This law will help individuals who experience sexual assault at the hands of another Guard member to get justice. 
  • Strengthens protections for renters with service or support animals. For example, one new law prohibits charging additional fees or rent for a service or support animal.

You can view a list of all the laws that take effect this weekend here.

COVID-19 Update 

With the Delta variant continuing to spread across the country, having as many Minnesotans vaccinated as possible is extremely important. It’s never been easier to get the vaccine, and it’s the most effective step you can take to keep yourself and others safe and healthy. You can view a list of vaccine providers and search for one nearby here. Please do your part to protect our community.

Last but not least, I love hearing from you! Please reach out to connect and let me know how things are going, if you have any questions or feedback, or if I can ever be of assistance. And I always love to hear about events and other things happening in our district! You can reach me via email at or by phone at (651) 296-4200.


Emma Greenman
State Representative

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