Today marks the first policy deadline in the Senate and House. Although committee meetings are growing longer, I was able to met virtually with several constituent groups to learn what issues are on their minds. AFSCME members spoke on the importance of Paid Family and Medical Leave and expanding broadband, both issues I have supported.

Our wonderful advocates from Living Well and Hammer explained on of their priorities this session is SF1319, a bill to provide additional money to the home and community based healthcare providers to deal with additional Covid19 issues.


I also met with Girls Scouts from St. Louis Park, who spoke about the way Girl Scouts has helped them overcome challenges. They also love the camping and horseback riding experiences, and of course, the cookies.



Paycheck Protection Program Forgiveness

The Senate passed bipartisan legislation Thursday to match the federal government’s tax-exclusion for forgiven Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) loans received by businesses in 2020. About 102,400 businesses received $11.3 billion worth of loans in Minnesota. Typically, forgiven loans are taxable at the state and federal level, but Congress made special exceptions last year. Conforming to that measure will cost Minnesota $409 million over the next two years.

The bill also includes a $28 million tax exemption for unemployed Minnesotans who collected the additional $600-per-week Pandemic Unemployment Compensation approved by Congress for 17 weeks in 2020. The Senate’s bill allows eligible Minnesotans to subtract 18% of these payments from income for 2020.

I voted in favor of the bill.

Policy Deadlines

Today marks the first policy deadline for the 2021 legislative session. Any legislation considered further must have passed out of policy committees in either the Senate or the House. Friday, March 19th is the second policy deadline. Senate bills and House bills containing policy items must be out of policy only committees in both bodies.

Updated Guidelines

Today Governor Walz announced an ease in many restrictions as the vaccine roll out continues. Below is additional information to guide your decision making in the coming months.


The longer days are giving us a hint of the summer to come, and while we have not eradicated Covid19, more and more Minnesotans are being vaccinated. Please continue to follow best practices: regular hand washing, social distancing when possible, and wearing your mask for yourself and your neighbors.


Ron Latz