Walz announces health, safety budget proposals

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Governor Tim Walz has unveiled the proposed state budget for public safety and health.

According to Walz’s office, his latest proposal includes $22 million to expand access to non-narcotic pain management services, $100 million investment in housing, $1 million in firefighter education and training, and $300 million in public safety assistance to cities. $4.5 million upfront and $1.5 million grant to help agencies purchase body cameras, as well as county and tribal governments.

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The budget proposal would also create an Office of Missing and Murdered African American Women.

Items listed in the offer include:

  • Universal background checks on all firearm sales
  • Raising the minimum age to 21 to purchase military-style firearms
  • Prohibition of high-capacity magazines
  • Permanent funding to the state’s Department of Veterans Affairs to find gaps in homeless veteran response systems and connect at-risk veterans experiencing homelessness with Social Security Disability benefits
  • Establishing incentives for incarcerated individuals to participate in treatment plans that help them return to communities
  • Creating a public health insurance for Minnesotans
  • Expanding Medical Assistance eligibility
  • Expanding the Prescription Drug Price Transparency program to include pharmacy benefits managers and wholesalers
  • Provide funds to support grants for recovery and overdose prevention
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The announcement follows last week’s $12 billion proposal focused on childcare and education, as well as a $4.1 billion initiative for the local economy, including agriculture and small businesses.

Walz’s proposal comes as a $300 million public safety bill is fast on the way in the Minnesota Capitol, and the money will be funneled to Minnesota’s local, county, and tribal police departments to help stop crime before it happens. Proponents say getting the bill to the state senate and then to Walz’s desk is a high priority.

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Check back for updates and reactions to the latest budget proposal.

Walz is expected to announce the full biennial budget this Tuesday.

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