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Legislative News and Views - Rep. Kelly Moller (DFL)

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Final Stretch at the Capitol

Friday, May 19, 2023

Dear Neighbors,

I hope you are able to get out and enjoy the improving weather. The legislative session is coming to an end as we are constitutionally required to adjourn Monday and will return to the Capitol next February. We have been busy passing many wonderful bills, and I would like to highlight some of them here.

As Chair of the Public Safety Finance and Policy Committee, I’m proud to report that our Public Safety bill to provide safety to all Minnesotans will be signed by the Governor in the upcoming days. This transformational bill includes gun violence prevention measures, funding for those who serve crime victims, juvenile justice reform, measures to increase rehabilitation and reduce recidivism, officer recruitment initiatives, and so much more!


Here are some of the highlights of this historic bill that covers prevention to rehabilitation and everything in between:

Gun Violence Prevention

We are taking definitive action to reduce gun violence. This bill will implement criminal background checks to keep guns out of the hands of those who are prohibited from having them. Red flag laws are also central to this legislation, creating an effective tool to prevent those likely to cause harm from doing so. You can read more here. In addition, the bill includes my provision to increase penalties for those who possess the illegal devices that make guns fully automatic.

Support for Law Enforcement and Victims

We are standing up for law enforcement with historic investments for recruitment, the number one request from our law enforcement partners. Victims and survivors will receive the assistance they need through advocacy programs, a human trafficking task force, domestic violence protections, housing supports, and state-paid sexual assault exams. My bill to reduce the turn-around time for processing rape kits is also included, and we provide funding for forensic scientists at the Bureau of Criminal Apprehension (BCA) to reduce backlogs in evidence turn-around time. Our nation’s first Missing and Murdered Black Women and Girls Office is created through this bill.

Juvenile Justice Reform

With funding for juvenile treatment homes, an Office of Restorative Practices, and youth intervention grants, this bill will have a transformative effect on juvenile justice in Minnesota. These priorities will shape the lives of Minnesota’s youth. You can learn about some of the initiatives here.

Community Violence Prevention

This bill prevents crime with an unprecedented investment in community violence prevention grants. These grants will be used to fund a wide range of programs to address the root causes of crime and violence. This is a direct investment into communities that need it the most, which will spark a sea change in Minnesota’s criminal justice system. 

Taking Action Against Crime

This bill takes action on crime, including gun violence, fentanyl dealing, organized retail theft, crimes motivated by bias, and more. It also provides funding to the BCA to assist local jurisdictions in solving violent crime, and it bolsters the use of co-responder models that can best address a mental health call for help. I worked across the aisle to craft the fentanyl language that is included, and you can read about that here. This bill creates a new crime of carjacking and includes my provision to help law enforcement apprehend offenders through the use of technology. In addition, the legislature has already passed a bill to address catalytic converter theft.

Improved Rehabilitation

We make a historic investment in our probation systems that has statewide benefits. Every county in the state signed a letter of support regarding the new probation funding formula system that we incorporate in this bill. We also invest in programs that provide treatment, education, and employment skills to those who are incarcerated or on probation. This will reduce recidivism and help people get back on track.



We have passed transformational bills to help Minnesota’s students. Our final Early Childhood budget invests $300 million over the next four years in Great Start scholarships. These early learning scholarships increase access to high-quality early care and learning programs for lower-income and vulnerable children to improve school readiness and allow parents to access employment and education opportunities. From birth to age five, a child’s brain develops more rapidly than at any other time in life. Research has made it clear that the quality of a child’s experiences in the first few years of life help shape how their brain develops. These experiences have lasting impacts on their health and ability to learn and succeed in school and in life.

Our final K-12 education budget bill includes $2.2 billion in new investments into our education system. This includes a 4% per-pupil increase in the general education formula in 2024 and a 2% increase in 2025 for an investment totaling $704 million; this increase is then linked to inflation in following years. The bill contains resources for more mental health professionals, social workers, and counselors for our students. A provision I have been working on for years to ensure a dedicated position at the Department of Education for student mental health has been included.

We approved the conference committee report on the state’s Higher Education Budget. With declining enrollment across higher education, the report provides a record increase in investment for Minnesota’s colleges and universities to reverse this trend. The Higher Education budget for 2024-2025 funds the Office of Higher Education, the Minnesota State Colleges and Universities, the University of Minnesota campuses, the Mayo Clinic Medical School, and Tribal Colleges. 

Paid Family and Medical Leave
Paid Family and Medical Leave is set to become law! The bill provides Minnesota workers up to 12 weeks of paid family leave to care for family or themselves. The program is funded by a small employer and employee contribution, and partial wage replacement under the fund will function similarly to Minnesota’s unemployment insurance system. 


Stay In Touch

Please feel free to contact me directly with your viewpoints or if I can be of assistance. My email is and my phone number is 651-296-0141. You can learn about bills that have been introduced here and keep track of the bills I’ve authored here. If you have neighbors, friends, or family who you think would find these updates valuable, please share this with them; they can subscribe here. I also encourage you to follow me on Facebook.

Thank you for the opportunity to serve you.


Kelly Moller
State Representative