On Tuesday, the Minnesota Senate passed legislation that fairly distributes federal COVID-19 assistance to local governments across the state. The bill, Senate File 47, passed by a vote of 62-4, and awaits action by the Minnesota House of Representatives.
“This was a bipartisan compromise that makes sure cities and counties across Minnesota receive a fair and proportionate amount of the federal COVID-19 aid,” said Senator Scott Newman (R-Hutchinson). “This bill makes sure there is transparency and accountability in the way the aid is distributed. It’s the legislature’s job to make sure our communities are getting the state and federal support they need.”
The federal government allocated more than $2 billion in assistance to the State of Minnesota to help local governments, health care, and businesses respond to the COVID-19 pandemic. The funds, which are in the Minnesota Federal Coronavirus Relief Fund, can be quickly dispersed if the legislation is signed into law.
The legislation calls for approximately $841 million to be distributed among Minnesota counties, cities, and townships according to a population-based formula. The bill provides significant funding for counties, cities, and townships, including $4.3 million for McLeod County, $2.8 million for Meeker County, $1.8 million for Sibley County, and $16.5 million for Wright County.
Senator Scott Newman represents McLeod, Meeker, Sibley, and Wright counties in the Minnesota Senate. He serves as chair of the Senate Transportation Finance and Policy Committee.