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Legislative News and Views - Rep. Steve Sandell (DFL)

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Legislative Update - February 1, 2021

Monday, February 1, 2021

Dear neighbors,   

In early January, I was sworn in for my second term in the Minnesota House of Representatives. Since then, I have been busy attending public hearings, working on legislation, and having conversations with Minnesotans. I am eager to work together to build a stronger, more inclusive state and a promising future for us all. 

Sandell Swearing In

Legislative Priorities for 2021 

Recently, my House DFL colleagues and I announced our priorities for the 2021 legislative session. This year, we are focused on ensuring Minnesotans can make it through the pandemic and thrive after it ends. Our first steps include providing assistance to Minnesotans impacted by COVID-19, strengthening worker protections, protecting those who live and work in long-term care facilities and people experiencing homelessness, supporting students, and ensuring affordable child care is available to those who need it. In addition to working on these issues, I will advocate for the unique needs of Woodbury residents.  

Session Priorities

Business Assistance Available 

The Minnesota Department of Revenue recently issued $67.3 million in COVID-19 Business Relief Payments to nearly 4,000 restaurants, bars, gyms, and similar businesses. Businesses that didn’t receive a payment but think they meet the program criteria can contact the Department of Revenue through an online inquiry process, which is open until Friday, February 5. An additional round of payments will be made after that date for businesses that qualify.  

These payments were part of the bipartisan COVID-19 assistance package that the Minnesota Legislature passed in December. The legislation also included funding for each Minnesota county to deliver to local businesses and non-profits. Washington County, which received $5 million for this purpose, is accepting applications for grants of up to $15,000. You can find more information and apply here. The application window will close on Thursday, February 4 at 4:30 p.m.  

Gov. Walz’s COVID-19 Recovery Budget  

Last week, Gov. Walz unveiled his budget proposal for the next two years. Called the COVID-19 Recovery Budget, the proposal would support working families, ensure students catch up on learning, and help small businesses stay afloat while driving Minnesota’s economic recovery. I am pleased that the governor is confronting these challenges and investing in our state’s long-term success. Over the next few weeks, my colleagues and I will review Gov. Walz’s proposal and develop our own budget recommendations.  

How to Follow and Participate in the Legislative Process 

House Public Information Services is a great resource for nonpartisan news from the Capitol. If you would like to receive regular updates, you can follow their Facebook page or subscribe to Session Daily. Public hearings and floor sessions are broadcast on the House live stream channels and available on YouTube for those who can’t watch live.  

I will send these emails throughout the legislative session. Please feel free to forward them to friends, neighbors, or relatives who may be interested. You can also follow my Facebook page for more frequent updates.  

Please reach out if you have any questions, ideas, or feedback or if I can be of assistance. You can contact me at or 651-296-1147. 


Steve Sandell  
State Representative

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