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Capitol Newsletter from Rep. Paul Novotny: Update on "Stay at Home" Order

Wednesday, March 25, 2020

Dear Neighbors,

Earlier today, Governor Walz announced a "Stay at Home" executive order and extended the current closures for bars, restaurants, and other businesses under previous executive orders until May 1. The Governor also issued an Executive Order extending distance learning for schools until May 4. 

The "Stay at Home" order will last two weeks and will limit movement outside homes beyond essential trips for two weeks. It is effective Friday, March 27 at 11:59PM until Friday, April 10.

According to the Governor, the goal of these measures is to delay the "peak" in total cases, and to give Minnesota the time we need to build hospital and ICU capacity and to stockpile personal protective equipment (PPE) for our clinics and hospital workers. Current data shows that the survival rate for severe cases is 10x higher when patients have the ICU care they need.

The order allows Minnesotans to leave their residences only to perform any of the following activities and while doing so they should practice social distancing:

  • Health/safety activities
  • Outdoor activities
  • Purchasing necessary supplies and services like groceries and medicine
  • Essential and interstate travel
  • Care of others
  • Displacement
  • Relocation to ensure safety

I want to note that this is not a comprehensive list.

Workers who provide critical services are exempt for the purposes of traveling to their jobs. This list includes:

  • Healthcare and public health
  • Law enforcement, public safety, and first responders
  • Childcare
  • Food, and agriculture
  • News media
  • Energy
  • Water and wastewater
  • Critical manufacturing

Once again, this is not a comprehensive list, and Minnesotans should visit for additional guidance. There is also a state email address that businesses can contact if they have questions:

If your business is currently considered non-essential and you would like to request an exemption from the "Stay at Home" order, please submit a request to the Minnesota Department of Employment and Economic Development here.

A lot of you have questions about what this means for your business and day-to-day lives. I am including a link to the Governor's full order that explains all the details and provides answers to many of the questions you probably have. You can also email or call my office, and I will work to get answers to you as quickly as possible. 

There’s a lot of stress, confusion, and anxiety that many Minnesotans are feeling during this uncertain time. Please know that I am continuing to work to provide assistance to families and businesses. The legislature will be meeting tomorrow to pass additional COVID-19 response legislation. 

Frequently Asked Questions about the Stay at Home order. 

Info about critical business exemptions

Please reach out to my office if you have questions or if I can assist you in any way. My phone number is 651-296-4237 or you can email me at

Be well,