Week seven of the 2019 session was dominated by the news of Gov. Walz releasing his budget blueprint for the next two-year biennium. He focused his budget on the shared priorities of all Minnesotans: providing a high-quality education for all kids regardless of their race or zip code, providing access to quality health care at a price people can afford, making sure every community thrives across Minnesota, investing in the state’s crumbling infrastructure which is putting Minnesotans’ public safety at risk, and providing tax relief for all Minnesotans.
Committees were also busy. The electronic monitoring bill moved to the floor, the Taylor Hayden Gun Violence Prevention Act was heard, legislation on opioids moved through another committee, Regent recommendations were made, a bill to establish special taxing districts for fire departments was heard, the Help America Vote Act, MNLARs and MnPass were discussed, electric vehicle surcharges were heard in Transportation, and a number of veterans’ bills were considered – to name a few.
On Monday, Feb. 25, the Senate DFL is launching its new podcast, “Call of the Senate.” We’ve all heard the talking points, now you can go behind the scenes and listen to what makes Senate DFLers tick. You’ll be engaged, informed, and entertained by personal stories from the Senators – all of the Senate DFL members have fascinating backstories. Please listen to a clip from the podcast’s great host, Sen. Jeff Hayden.
SAVE THE DATE: Monday, Feb. 25, 2019 – and share the podcast links with your members, organizations, allies, and friends.
Governor Walz unveiled his 2020-21 budget proposal this week, which features approximately $49.6 million in total spending or an 8.6% increase from the 2018-19 budget.
The budget makes an historic investment in education to provide every child in Minnesota with a high-quality education, regardless of their race or zip code. The Governor’s budget would close the funding gap and make sure that every child has a good teacher, receives individual attention, and has access to the materials they need to compete in today’s economy.
Every Minnesotan deserves access to quality health care at a price they can afford. The Governor’s budget includes funding to extend low-cost coverage to thousands of farmers, small business owners, and entrepreneurs. It also provides every Minnesotan with an additional health care option, encourages stability in the individual market, and makes health care more affordable in Minnesota
Hundreds of people took part in Arc Minnesota’s 2019 Disability Day at the Capitol this week. Participants attended a training seminar, met with legislators, and participated in a rally. They were at the Capitol to raise awareness surrounding critical issues affecting Minnesotans with disabilities, their family members, support staff, and allies. Their goals for this legislative session are to advocate for a solution to the workforce crisis, prevent sexual violence, improve access to self-directed supports, and increase investment and self-advocacy.
Some issues people with disabilities are fighting for include reducing parental fees associated with the Medical Assistance (MA) TEFRA program, which have dramatically increased over time making MA-TEFRA unaffordable for many Minnesota families.