I hope this finds you well and enjoying fall. It’s certainly been busy. I’d like to take a moment to share with you some updates from the Capitol and our community.
Not too long ago, I joined Minnesota Nurses on the picket line as they advocated for reasonable nurse-to-patient staffing ratios. They’re doing their best to care for patients with increasing caseloads, but it’s getting more difficult for nurses to be expected to provide the same quality of care to each patient.
When nurses are supported in the workplace, we’re helping patients receive the quality level of care all Minnesotans deserve. I stand in solidarity with nurses as they work to negotiate these fair workplace standards.
Welcoming the House Capital Investment Committee to our Region
A few weeks ago, I welcomed the House Capital Investment Committee with Rep. Rick Hansen to our region. I’m cosponsoring legislation next session to deliver a long term solution for water quality improvement in Inver Grove Heights. The water treatment plant rehabilitation project needs $5.2 million in state funding to be up to state health department standards.
I’m grateful to Inver Grove Heights Mayor Dietrich, City Manager Wilson, and all the city staff who work hard to keep water quality safe for our residents.
I’m looking forward to our continued partnership when session gets underway in February!
Celebrating Native American Heritage Month
I recently celebrated the first day of Native American Heritage Month this month by joining my colleague Senator Mary Kunesh at the "Voices from Pejuhutazizi: Dakota Stories and Storytellers" program featuring authors Teresa R. Peterson and Walter LaBatte Jr. It was an informative and impactful event. October 9th marked the first time Minnesota observed Indigenous Peoples' Day as a state-recognized holiday, and the first time schools will devote time to informing students about the day's significance. This was long overdue and I'm glad we passed this measure into law.
New Minnesota Military and Veterans Museum Groundbreaking
It’s not every day you can say you’ve attended an event with a still-functioning bulldozer from WWII! It was fitting for the celebration to make way for the new Minnesota Military and Veterans Museum in Camp Ripley in Little Falls, Minnesota.
As a member of the House Veterans Affairs Committee, I was honored to help shepherd this $32 million in state funding for construction of the new facility, which is slated to open in the spring of 2025.
Education & Housing Partnership
I recently attended a celebration to announce a new and exciting partnership among two amazing organizations: Black Men Teach and Habitat for Humanity. Black Men Teach is a nonprofit located in Minnesota that works to recruit, prepare, place, and retain Black male elementary school teachers. Twin Cities Habitat for Humanity brings people together to create, preserve, and advance racial equity in affordable homeownership. This type of teamwork helps improve outcomes for all our young people in Minnesota. I can't wait to see what these two amazing non-profit organizations have planned for the near future.
Minnesota Values Project Survey
The 2024 session is just around the corner, set to begin in early February. I’ve been gathering input and suggestions from our communities about the future path of our state. Minnesota is a special place to live for so many reasons; let’s keep working together to enact new ideas to keep us moving forward. I’d be so appreciative if you have a few minutes to fill out this short Minnesota Values Project survey; it helps me lift up our priorities and bring them to St. Paul.