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Bliss: Legislature approves additional funding for Bemidji vets home

Monday, May 9, 2022


ST. PAUL – The Minnesota House on Friday overwhelmingly approved legislation Rep. Matt Bliss, R-Pennington, said includes additional funding for the veterans home currently under construction in Bemidji.

Bliss is a member of the House committee on veterans. He said the bill includes more than $10 million for construction cost increases for the three new veterans’ homes in Bemidji, Montevideo, and Preston, and more than $16 million for enhancements and furnishings to these facilities. The state originally provided funding for construction in 2018, when Bliss advocated for the projects in the House.

“I am proud of the work I did to help deliver funding to construct the Bemidji veterans home and I look forward to the grand opening,” Bliss said. “Veterans have been a top priority of mine in the House and it’s good to see overwhelming support for them in the Legislature. Veterans deserve a bill of their own, instead of this important funding getting bogged down by other issues, and that’s a key reason this package sailed through ahead of many others.”

The Minnesota Department of Veterans Affairs indicates the new veterans in Bemidji is scheduled to open in the summer of 2023 and will serve 72 residents.

Funding for the three veterans homes is part of the veterans and military affairs package (S.F. 4233) which, overall, appropriates an additional $2.2 million to the Department of Military Affairs and an additional $52.351 million to the Department of Veterans Affairs.

Veterans and Gold Star families who served post-9/11 will receive a total of $24.8 million post-service bonus payments.  The bill also includes funding to address veteran homelessness, money for the State Veterans Cemetery in Redwood Falls, and other veterans related programs.

The bill passed the House 122-1 and cleared the Senate with no opposition, reaching the governor for enactment.