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RELEASE: Baker bill to grow long-term care workforce passes first committee

Thursday, February 12, 2015
ST. PAUL, MN—A bill chief authored by Assistant Majority Leader Rep. Dave Baker, R-Willmar, to help grow Minnesota's long-term care workforce passed its first committee hurdle Wednesday on a unanimous vote in the Aging and Long Term Care Policy Committee.
Baker's bill, HF614, includes several provisions including tuition reimbursements for recent nursing graduates, a loan forgiveness program for nurses, reimbursements for nursing homes who commit to serving under-served parts of the state for 2-4 years to train new employees, and the establishment of a long-term care grant program to provide education, training, and incentives to attract new employees.
"If we want to protect the quality of life for Minnesota seniors, we must address the pressing workforce issues facing long-term care and nursing home facilities," Baker said. "This bill is a step in that direction, and will help long-term care attract and retain more talented workers who will provide quality care for our loved ones."
The bill will head next to the Greater Minnesota Economic and Workforce Development Policy Committee.
Dave Lucia, VP of Human Resources from Tealwood Care Centers and Deb Barnes, Executive Director of Lakeview Methodist Health Services testify in favor of HF614 in the Aging and Long Term Care Policy Committee on Wednesday, February 11.