Skip to main content Skip to office menu Skip to footer
Capital IconMinnesota Legislature

Legislative News and Views - Rep. Barb Haley (R)

Back to profile

Legislative Update

Friday, January 15, 2021

Dear Friends and Neighbors,

We finally have some more snow! Stay safe on the roads and hopefully, you can get out to enjoy some of the freshly fallen snow. 

Vaccine Rollout & Dashboard 
Many of you have asked about COVID-19 vaccine availability and how the rollout is going in Minnesota. The Minnesota Department of Health (MDH) launched a new dashboard that gives frequently updated information on the rollout of the vaccine. It even gives a county-by-county breakdown.

You can view this new dashboard here:

MDH and local county health departments will work together to oversee distribution. As more doses come online, I expect that every resident that wishes to receive a vaccine can do so.

Indoor Dining Open Again! 
On Monday, the ban on indoor dining in Minnesota was lifted. We had a great dinner out at the Railhouse Grill in Lake City. I spoke with owner Arlen Stark about how they’ve managed during the shutdown and the process of applying for the business relief grants that we passed last month.

While I hope all of our area restaurants are helped by these grants, the ultimate goal is a full re-opening to get our economy back on track and get people fully employed.

I also got to catch up with my daughter’s friend, Cassandra, who was our server. 

National Science Foundation Grant
Congratulations to Minnesota State College Southeast that received a $516,513 grant from the National Science Foundation. This grant, guaranteed for three years, will build on MSC Southeast’s success in creating high school partnerships for students throughout southeast Minnesota.

This will help create more pathways for high school students that lead directly to college education and career in technical fields. 

I am extremely excited to see more trade and technical education opportunities for the students in our community. These education opportunities lead to good-paying, in-demand jobs. It is so important that our students have the opportunity to dive into these exciting and in-demand career fields. 

Local News
CONGRATS to Minnesota native Jesse Diggins (who also has ties to Red Wing) who became the first American to win the grueling Tour de Ski Cross Cross-Country competition.
SERVICE AWARDS: The Goodhue County Sheriff’s Office has annual service awards and this week they announced their award winners. Congratulations to all the deserving officers! You can read the stories on the Goodhue County Sheriff Facebook Page. 
THANK YOU! I’d like to offer my thanks and gratitude to two community leaders who retired this month. Mike Melstad served as the Executive Director of the Red Wing YMCA for 12 years. I had the privilege of working closely with Mike during my tenure on the Y Board of Directors. You couldn’t find someone more committed to the care of our youth, seniors, and members from our community than Mike. He served with an unrelenting passion to help people and make our community a better place. Enjoy your retirement, Mike!

Patty Brown retired after a decade of leadership for the Red Wing Area Chamber of Commerce. Patty’s accomplishments are too long to list here, but I thank her for her commitment to our businesses and always striving to make Red Wing a great place to work and build a business. Patty all the best to you as you seek new adventures! I’m excited that the Chamber selected Lake City native Michelle Larson as the new Chamber Director. I’ve gotten to know Michelle these past few years, as she was the director of the Lake City Chamber of Commerce, and I look forward to the ideas and energy she will bring to her new role in Red Wing.


As always, if you have questions or concerns regarding any issue, please contact me. You can reach me at or 651-296-8635.