Senator Newton Tours Minneapolis Veterans Home

ST. PAUL, Minn. – Senator Jerry Newton (DFL-Coon Rapids), DFL lead on the Senate Veterans and Military Affairs Finance and Policy Committee, toured the Minneapolis Veterans Home Friday. The tour focused on the urgent need to rehabilitate building 6, which would provide up to 39 new spaces for Minnesota’s veterans in need of a home.

“One of our most important responsibilities and obligations that we need to honor is taking care of our veterans and making sure they have a place to live and be supported,” said Senator Newton. “Too many veterans are on a waiting list for stable housing while at the same time we have a building sitting vacant. With some one-time funding, we could rehabilitate this building and give dozens of veterans a community to live in with access to the services and care they need and have earned.”

Currently, approximately 800 Minnesota veterans are on a waiting list to get into The Minneapolis Veterans Home. The total request of $13.5 million would rehabilitate the building, creating a dormitory including 39 rooms for veterans. If the state funding were secured, an additional $27 million in federal funds could be unlocked to make other repairs and modernize the building. While the proposal was not included in the Governor’s initial bonding bill, Senator Newton will continue to advocate for its inclusion either through bonding or general fund dollars.

“The Twin Cities area has the largest population of veterans seeking admittance to a veteran’s home, and we cannot forget where the greatest need is and how we can best serve the most significant number of veterans,” said Senator Newton.

Senator Newton was joined on the tour by Representative Rob Ecklund (DFL-International Falls), Minnesota Department of Veterans Affairs Commissioner Larry Herke, and Minnesota Department of Veterans Affairs Administrator Thomas Paul.

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Jerry Newton is a state senator who represents Blaine, Coon Rapids, and Spring Lake Park. He is the Ranking Member of the Veterans and Military Affairs Finance and Policy Committee and a member of the following committees: Family Care and Aging; and Higher Education Finance and Policy. Sen. Newton is also a member of the Legislative Permanent School Fund Commission and the Minnesota Amateur Sports Commission. A high-resolution photo of Sen. Newton is available for download here.

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