5/27/2020 10:58:15 AM
[ST. PAUL, MN] – Governor Tim Walz today signed 21 bills into law, including measures to support farmers and meat processing plants through COVID-19, provide over $70 million to support renewable energy projects, and make other technical changes.
“This package of legislation is a product of the extensive bipartisan collaboration that has taken place in the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic to support our farmers with mental health and safety resources, combat the opioid epidemic, and shore up our investment in renewable energy,” said Governor Walz. “I was proud to work with our legislative partners to get these bills across the finish line.”
The bill signing today included:
Allows people 16 and 17 years old to operate amusement park rides and increases safety and training requirements for Amusement Park owners.
Expands the definition of “modular home” from only single family to include two family dwellings.
Includes transportation policy provisions that will streamline the driver’s license renewal process, improve safety around meteorological towers, and modify school bus inspection procedures.
Provides funding for farm safety and mental health; funds grants for meat processors affected by COVID-19; appropriates money to the University of Minnesota Veterinary Diagnostic Lab to help prepare for African Swine Fever; funds grants to aid with origination fees associated with debt restructuring for farmers; and provides financial assistance to food retailers for the purchase of PPE.
Authorizes the North Branch Public Utilities Commission to increase its membership to five members, no more than two of whom may also serve as city council members.
Allows the Metropolitan Airports Commission to set the on-sale hours at the airports they regulate; changes how municipal liquor store profitability is calculated to trigger an automatic public hearing; and authorizes multiple municipalities to issue an on-sale liquor license in their jurisdiction.
Appropriates dollars from the Lessard-Sams Outdoor Heritage fund and provides extensions to grants from the Clean Water Fund, Parks and Trails Fund, and Arts and Cultural Heritage Fund.
Makes a modification to the Conservation Improvement Program (CIP) statute. Adds the promotion of LED lighting to current public utility and cooperative electric conservation improvement activities that encourage the use of efficient lighting.
Exempts people who perform only hair styling (washing, drying, arranging, and styling) and makeup services from cosmetology licensing requirements, provided they complete a four-hour safety and sanitation course.
Makes a modification to current statute that will now allow money transmitters to put a hold on the transmission of funds if there is a suspicion of fraud.
Addresses administrative and structural issues related to firefighter relief associations; allows contributions to multiemployer retirement plans for certain construction and trade employees; and makes numerous administrative, conformance, and technical changes that affect pensions.
Makes technical changes to operations at the agency and to 529 plans, and changes to institution licensure and registration for increased student protections.
Amends several statutes related to public safety and corrections, including prohibiting drones from flying over correctional facilities; requiring the Department of Corrections to provide feminine hygiene products; requiring background checks of employees at noncriminal justice agencies; suspending Youth Intervention Grant local matches temporarily; and removing limitation of conservation officers in administering DWI law.
Aims at providing flexibility and stability to Minnesota’s horse racing industry in the face of COVID-19.
Reduces the number of jobs Verso in Duluth is required to retain from 200 to 150 as a condition for the forgiveness they receive for their Minnesota Investment Fund loan.
Directs the commissioner of human services to award specific grants using funds in the opiate epidemic response account.
Modifies the utilization review and prior authorization requirements used by health insurance companies to medically manage health care benefits.
Makes modifications and clarifications around health and health care policy. The bill includes provisions aligning state Medicaid law to Federal law; clarifies existing Medicaid law and makes technical corrections; allows registration of facilities and x-ray equipment and individuals who can operate x-ray systems in the state of Minnesota; clarifies requirement for medical records; and outlines requirements for MDH’s Office of Medical Cannabis inspections and allows for MDH and the Public Facilities Authority (PFA) to modify the existing Drinking Water Revolving Fund Program to provide funding for lead service line (LSL) replacement on private property.
Addresses COVID-19 impacts to the 2019-2020 school year (eliminates truancy, conditional Tier 3 licenses, formula adjustments, fund transfers, modified minimum instructional days for probationary teachers); adopts forecast article for school budgets; opens up regional library telecommunications aid to be spent on technology and internet access; makes permanent students with limited and interrupted formal education to participate until age 22; and removes a set-aside for extended time revenue under compensatory revenue.
Authorizes the Polk County Law Library to transfer up to half of the money in its fiscal reserve to Polk County for costs associated with technological improvements to the Polk County Courthouse.
Appropriates funds to a number of different programs: $20 million for the solar rewards solar energy production incentive program; $2 million for a community transition grant program to support host communities where a gas, coal or nuclear plant is shutting down; $46.2 million for Prairie Island Indian Community Net Zero; and $2.75 million for the Granite Falls hydroelectric project.