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Legislative News and Views - Rep. Heather Keeler (DFL)

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Legislative Update - Our Supplemental Budgets

Friday, May 10, 2024
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Dear Neighbors, 

We’re in the final days of the legislative session, with our work required to be done by May 20. Right now, we’re spending a lot of time on the House Floor, debating and passing policy proposals and supplemental budget bills. As a member of the Children & Families and Human Services Finance Committees, I’d like to especially highlight the great work we’ve done in those areas. 

Here’s an update from St. Paul:


Supporting Children and Families

Is there any work more important than standing up for Minnesota’s children? For our families? I don’t think so, which is why I am so honored to serve as Vice Chair of our Children and Families Finance and Policy Committee this session. 

We started this month off strong by passing our committee’s supplemental budget bill of the House Floor, building off the work we did last year. Whether it's addressing hunger or homelessness, I spoke on our efforts to capitalize on last year's historic investments and continue building a better Minnesota. 

You can watch my comments below:

Floor Speech

In the areas of food security and action against homelessness, our supplemental budget bill provides more than $10 million per biennium - unlocking more than $100 million in federal funding - for a summer meals program for children, building on the universal school meals program that DFLers enacted last session. The bill also provides $5 million to food shelves, food banks, and Tribal food sovereignty programs, as well as $4 million to address increases in homelessness, and possible closures of emergency shelters, throughout the state.

Those are dollars that can make a difference, and I look forward to ensuring this bill gets over the finish line in the next few days.


Investing in Human Services

In a similar vein, we also recently passed our Human Services supplemental budget off the House Floor. Like our Children and Families bill, this legislation also took steps to address homelessness, in addition to efforts to support disability services, PCAs, and those grappling with substance use disorders. 

You can read about the investments we made in this supplemental budget here.

Human Services

I’m happy to say that my legislation to invest over $1.6 million to establish the Homelessness and Housing Support Office was included in the bill. This office will engage with other state agencies, counties, Tribes, and advocacy organizations on their mission to provide services to those experiencing homelessness.

Housed within the Department of Human Services, this new office would make recommendations to the Legislature on improving access to homeless services and supportive housing, improving service delivery, and improving the effectiveness of the state’s homeless and supportive housing system. The policies we pass and the investments we make to address homelessness won’t do a whole lot of good if Minnesotans can’t easily access these resources.

Our Human Services Supplemental Budget, like most of our bills, needs to now go through a conference committee made up of House and Senate members before both chambers pass identical legislation a final time, which then gets sent to Governor Walz for his signature. 


Our Supplemental Budgets

Last year, with a historic budget, we delivered a lifeline to thousands of Minnesotans. We invested in tried and true programs and established new ones to help our neighbors and make Moorhead a better place to live, work, and raise a family. This year, our supplemental budgets continue that work. 

In addition to our Children & Families and Human Services bills, we’ve also passed several of the House’s proposals in key issue areas. If you’re interested, you can read these nonpartisan summaries of the bills we’ve passed so far, including  K-12 Education, Transportation, Labor, and Housing, Higher Education, Judiciary and Public Safety, State and Local Government, Elections, Workforce and Economic Development, and Taxes.

We’ll pass even more in the coming days, with our remaining time in St. Paul focused on working with Senate colleagues to craft consensus legislation for these bills. I’ll be sure to keep you updated on what gets passed into law!


Mni Sóta Makoce

This Saturday, May 11, 2024, Minnesota celebrates 166 years of statehood. The Minnesota State Flag and Seal approved by the State Emblems Redesign Commission early this year will become the official state emblems. This is a culmination of months gathering input from and engaging with Minnesotans to find consensus on a flag and seal that represents the best of all of us.

State Seal

The new flag has gotten a lot of attention, but I’d like to highlight the new seal, bearing the Dakota phrase “Mni Sóta Makoce,” meaning “the land where the water reflects the skies.”

If you’re not familiar with the phrase, or pronouncing it, MPR had a helpful article last December. I’m looking forward to seeing our new state emblems around the capitol and throughout Minnesota!


Stay Connected

As we head into the final days of the legislative session, now is a great time to reach out with any questions, comments, or ideas you may have on our work to improve our community and state. You also always reach out to my office at or 651-296-5515. I look forward to hearing from you!

In community, 


Rep. Heather Keeler

Minnesota House of Representatives