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Legislative News and Views - Rep. Cheryl Youakim (DFL)

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Summer Update- July 21, 2023

Friday, July 21, 2023
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Dear Neighbors,

I hope you’re having a great summer! My June and July has been action packed so far. In June, I attended a National Conference for State Legislators conference in Seattle focused on education with leaders from across the country. Members of our House Education Finance Committee also took a tour of the Perpich Center for the Arts in Golden Valley. In July, as one of the six Minnesota appointees, I attended the Education Commission of the States in Minneapolis. It was wonderful to network with commissioners from across the state to discuss education policy, as well as show off our beautiful city. Bonus, I had the chance to present during a breakout session regarding the Minnesota Legislature’s work on universal school meals.

Conference photo

There has also been a chance for some downtime. Jacques and I took a week-long camping trip up to Sleeping Giant Provincial Park in Canada and to Golden Eagle Lodge on the Gunflint trail. “Up North” is truly a beautiful and magical place that fills up your soul.

State Park photo


Rep. Youakim and Jacques

It has also been great to be out and about in the community, checking in with neighbors, and celebrating one of my favorite events, Hopkins’ Raspberry Festival. Thank you to all the volunteers who work so hard to make these events a success.

Raspberry Festival

July 1st marks the beginning of a new fiscal year in Minnesota. As a result of our work balancing the state budget with historic investments in our students, working families and the critical supports they rely on like quality education, infrastructure, workforce development, affordable housing, and environmental protections, new laws delivering this funding went into effect earlier this month. You can find a comprehensive list of these new laws from the nonpartisan office of House of Representatives Public Information here.

In addition to these, several new initiatives we passed will also become law on August 1; those are available for review here


Hopkins & St. Louis Park to Receive State Funding to Address Emerald Ash Borer

Identifying infected or at-risk trees and addressing EAB-related challenges is an obstacle for many communities. With Emerald Ash Borer on the rise, we took action at the legislature this year and prioritized grant funding to protect urban and rural forests. As a result, our Hopkins community will receive $123,200 and St. Louis Park will receive a boost of $25,321 in their ability to protect our trees thanks to funding we passed during the legislative session.

These grants will help 35 recipient communities take more cost effective preemptive measures than waiting for ash trees to become infested. By taking proactive steps now, we can save more trees! I’m glad to see these investments coming to our region.


ResourceWest and STEP Back to School Programs

ResourceWest’s Back to School program is underway! The local organization is busy preparing to distribute backpacks filled with school supplies to 1,200 youth in the community between August 14th and August 17th. Below is the 2023 program flyer (English, Spanish, and Somali version included). Your support is welcome as ResourceWest prepares to help kids and teens in the West Metro have a great start to the school year. You can assist by volunteering with the program, or by providing donations to help meet a growing need for winter gear for families. If you or anyone you know could benefit from enrolling in the program, registration will be open for families to schedule an appointment on July 31st. Families can register online, or by calling the ResourceWest office to speak with a case manager at 952-933-3860. 

Back to School


Back to School Flyer-Somali


Back to school flyer in Spanish

St. Louis Park Emergency Program (STEP) helps our community every year by providing hundreds St. Louis Park students with much-needed school supplies and backpacks. Monetary donations are always welcome and allow STEP to purchase items on an as-needed basis. If you're interested, STEP has Amazon and Target wish lists for online purchases.

Donations can be dropped off at STEP during our regular office hours by August 15. For more information contact Mari at



Keep in Touch

Please continue to reach out anytime at or 651-296-9889 with input, questions, or to let me know how I can be of help. Email is the quickest way to get in touch. The work continues and I welcome your feedback anytime.

Have a great weekend!

Cheryl Signature

Cheryl Youakim
State Representative