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Saturday, December 4, 2021

Waltz Says He Won’t Give Up Taking / Taking Exams To Make A Deal With Republicans

Gov. Tim Waltz said he was unwilling to waive government vaccination or COVID-19 testing requirements for government officials as a condition to urge lawmakers back to the Capitol to take on the pay of hero workers, drought relief for farmers, and rejection of nursing homes. …

The governor said Wednesday that he spoke with legislative leaders but felt little progress in setting the agenda for a possible special session. A day earlier, Senate Majority Leader Jeremy Miller, R-Winona, said Republicans would be willing to temporarily abandon efforts to sack state health commissioner Ian Malcolm if Democratic Governor and House Speaker Melissa Hortman, DFL-Brooklyn Park, can agree with other terms.

Among them was a call to outlaw state regulations regarding COVID-19 vaccinations. Currently, the government requires employees who work in person to provide evidence of their vaccinations or disease tests on a regular basis.

Waltz said the rule was “good policy,” and he didn’t want to give up other priorities when it was just over two months before the next legislative session. And he said that the negotiations will continue.

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“This is not a deal yet,” he told reporters at an unrelated press conference on Wednesday. “As a subject of negotiations, it doesn’t make any sense. I’m being asked to cancel the speed limit. “

COVID-19 cases continued to climb in Minnesota, with more people in need of intensive care, putting an overwhelming strain on hospitals across the state. The bulk of those requiring hospitalization for a respiratory illness are not vaccinated against COVID-19.

Legislative leaders said they are close to a deal to provide drought relief funds to Minnesota growers and could quickly compromise on a plan to pay $ 250 million to front-line workers who remained at work during the pandemic. They also agreed to exceptions that could provide additional flexibility to hospitals and nursing homes.

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