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House OKs $5 million in emergency funding for Minnesota food shelves

The sticker shock many Minnesotans feel when buying groceries these days is even worse for the state’s food shelves, which must absorb those increased costs while trying to meet the increased need.

Put simply: Higher food prices have hit their supply and demand.

Sponsored by Rep. Heather Keeler (DFL-Moorhead), HF213 seeks to help by providing $5 million in emergency funding for the state’s food shelves.

The House passed the bill, as amended, 129-0 Thursday. It now heads to the Senate.

Keeler said one in 12 Minnesotans has experienced food insecurity and one in eight kids don’t have access to food. There are more than 300 food shelves in Minnesota, and they receive millions of visits each year. Those visits continue to rise.

“We know there is a massive increase in the number of people using food shelves across the state,” Keeler said.

The bill was amended to include a requirement that the Department of Human Services expedite distribution of the money, which would be available until June 30, 2024.

Rep. Andrew Myers (R-Tonka Bay) said his family has volunteered weekly at a local food shelf for years.

“There is a need in my backyard, in your backyard, and all of Minnesota,” Myers said.


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