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Legislative News and Views - Rep. Michael Howard (DFL)

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Legislative Update - The Final Weeks of Session

Friday, May 5, 2023
Howard Banner

Dear Neighbors, 

The 2023 Legislative Session is constitutionally required to adjourn by Monday, May 22, and so far we’re setting a great pace - far better than what we experienced in divided government. We are well on our way to passing a historic state budget, investing in the needs of Minnesotans.

Most of our work right now is being done in conference committees, where members of the House and Senate are working together to build final consensus legislation on our budget proposals. As Chair of the Housing Committee in the House, my focus has been on working with Sen. Lindsey Port, the Senate Chair, and our colleagues to craft a final Housing Budget. Sen. Port has been a fantastic partner all session, and I’m excited to share our final bill with you soon.


Paid Family and Medical Leave

This week, we passed Paid Family and Medical Leave in the Minnesota House. This bill has been a long time coming. Minnesotans want and deserve time to care for themselves and family members, whether it’s for a new baby, an unexpected illness, or an aging parent. That is why it is so vital we FINALLY pass paid family and medical leave.

Paid Family and Medical Leave Supporters

Less than 20% of workers in the United States have access to paid family and medical leave through their employers. The rest, predominantly lower-wage workers, face impossible decisions. While the federal Family & Medical Leave Act enables workers to take up to 12 weeks of unpaid leave following the birth of a child or if the worker or a family member has a serious illness or injury, most workers can’t go that long without a paycheck. 

We’re the only high-wealth country in the world that refuses to offer paid family leave. That’s a choice, and one we’re poised to change in Minnesota. Next stop, the Senate. 

We have just over two weeks to get this and other bills, including our budget, over the finish line. I’m confident in our ability to do so, together. 

In partnership, 


Michael Howard