Minnesota Senate follows House, passes $330 million bill funding coronavirus response

The Minnesota Senate unanimously passed a $330 million bill funding the state's response to the coronavirus, hours after the House cleared it.

(The Center Square) – The Minnesota Senate unanimously passed a $330 million bill funding the state’s response to the coronavirus, hours after the House cleared it.

House File 4531 was the third bill this session targeting COVID-19.

The 33-page bill includes:

  • $200 million in emergency funding;
  • $5.53 million to fund housing support;
  • $26.5 million to fund emergency service grants including hotel vouchers and hygiene supplies for the homeless;
  • Nearly $30 million to support child care providers;
  • $11 million for a tribal nations grant;
  • $6.2 million to fund relief for military veterans;
  • $9 million to fund food shelves;
  • $10 million for small business loans.

The legislature has passed a total of $552 million in response to the coronavirus.

“I want to assure Minnesotans we are working together to keep people safe from Coronavirus and the COVID-19 disease,” Senate Majority Leader Paul Gazelka, R-Nisswa, said in a statement.

“There are many ways that state government can act to protect Minnesotans’ lives and their livelihood, and this is just the first step to taking care of the most important needs.”

The bill will be sent to Gov. Tim Walz.

Lawmakers don’t plan to return to the Capitol until April 14, unless notified by leadership.

The state reported 346 positive cases of COVID-19 and two deaths as of Thursday.

Walz ordered Minnesotans Wednesday to shelter in place for two-weeks starting 11:59 p.m. Friday.