It’s finally spring! The sun is out! I hope you are finding ways to get outside this weekend. Many cities are also promoting No Mow May this year, which is an effort to help pollinators during this critical time of the year. More info about this effort can be found here.
COVID-19 vaccines are available for anyone ages 5 and older. You can also get a $50 gift card for each dose or booster from Ramsey County, while supplies last. You can schedule an appointment here.
Last week, House DFLers, Senate Republicans, and Governor Walz reached a bipartisan agreement to fully replenish the state’s Unemployment Insurance Trust Fund while also supporting frontline workers including health care workers, first responders, child care providers, food service and retail workers, and more with bonus checks.
With this compromise in law, the state of Minnesota is currently developing an online application system. Workers can sign up to receive updates at frontlinepay.mn.gov. We expect the system to be up and running in just a few weeks, and workers will have 45 days to apply once the application process opens. A full FAQ document, including eligibility information, is available here. If you have questions, please reach out and we will do our best to help!
Today we passed our veterans and military affairs supplemental budget bill with strong bipartisan support. This bill will take action to end veteran homelessness and provide assistance to veterans who need it. Our veterans provide us a priceless service and it is our duty as legislators to support them. This bill will now go to the Governor’s desk where he will sign it so we can continue supporting our veterans.
We passed legislation to regulate structured settlements, providing more protections and ensuring Minnesotans are less likely to be taken advantage of. Often Minnesotans will only receive a fraction of the settlement they are entitled to, a problem the Star Tribune highlighted late last fall and this bill will change that. We also passed a bill to create an ombudsman for foster care to begin the process to improve our foster care programs. Children in our foster system are very vulnerable, and it’s critical that we provide them with the protection and care they need for healthy and fulfilling lives.
The Minnesota Commerce Department encourages households that are struggling with energy bills to apply for the Energy Assistance Program, with up to $2,000 available to eligible households. In addition, as part of the Federal relief funding, there is help for households to pay past due water bills. For more information and to find your local service provider, go to the Minnesota Energy Assistance Program webpage. You can also call 1-800-657-3710 for more information.
As always, please don’t hesitate to contact me if I can be of assistance or if you have questions or feedback that you’d like to share. You can follow me on Facebook and you can reach me by email at firstname.lastname@example.org or by phone at 651-296-7153.
Please find time to go outside and enjoy the warmer weather!