ST. PAUL, Minn. – Earlier today, Governor Walz announced several new executive orders to address urgent needs in response to challenges from COVID-19. The orders prohibit price gouging and waive certain requirements of DHS to allow them to continue to support vulnerable Minnesotans. In response, Senator Karla Bigham (DFL-Cottage Grove) released the following statement:
“I want to thank Governor Walz for his quick action and leadership on these executive orders that will protect vulnerable Minnesotans, from both predatory behavior and from any disruption in essential services and needs,” said Senator Bigham. “This is an unprecedented situation before our state, but the Governor, our public health officials, and us at the legislature will continue to do everything we can to prioritize safety and security for all Minnesotans.”
Executive Oder 20-10 prohibits price gouging during the peacetime emergency, taking effect Saturday, March 21 at 5:00 p.m. with enforcement from the Attorney General’s office. This executive order brings Minnesota, which does not have a statute on price gouging, in line with most other states in the United States, and would subject people found in violation to a fine of up to $10,000.
Executive Order 20-12 allows DHS to temporarily issue waivers or modifications to state requirements to ensure that their services can be delivered to Minnesotans safely and without undue delay, protecting vulnerable Minnesotans and those who care for them. DHS provides health care coverage, programs, and services for more than one million Minnesotans, including groups likely to be significantly impacted by COVID-19 such as older adults, individuals who have disabilities, families with children, and individuals with mental illness.
The latest executive orders signed by Governor Walz, as well as all orders signed since the peacetime emergency began, are available here: https://mn.gov/governor/news/executiveorders.jsp.
The most up to date information on COVID-19 are available at the Minnesota Department of Health website here: https://www.health.state.mn.us/diseases/coronavirus/index.html.