2019 MN legislative session review
What changed and can it help you?
The 91st Minnesota legislative session concluded on May 24 and GESMN is here to break down a few of the changes that you should know about.
Minnesota Family Investment Program (MFIP): For the first time in 33 years, Minnesota increased cash assistance for low-income families by $100 per month. Approximately 33,000 Minnesota families receiving assistance will see this increase in February 2020.
Workforce Support for Adults with Disabilities: Several programs that help adults with disabilities obtain and retain competitive employment saw funding increases this session.
- Extended Employment (EE): Adults with a significant disability or other barrier to employment receive long-term support services to help keep a job and advance in a career. The legislature added to the base $4 million in provider rate increases for EE programs.
- Individualized Placement and Support (IPS): IPS is an employment program for adults with a serious and persistent mental illness. The core principles of this program include client choice, developing relationships with employers, integrated and competitive employment, benefits planning, continuous jobs supports, and the integration of employment and mental health services. One-time funding for expanded IPS programming across the state was approved by the legislature.
- Vocational Rehabilitation Services (VRS): VRS empowers Minnesotans with disabilities to find and keep jobs by providing employment services such as job counseling, job search assistance, training and job placement. Additional $7 million in biennial funding for the VRS was included to keep Category 1 services open. This will not increase services, but rather keep them from closing.
Tax Reform: The Working Family Tax Credit was expanded by about $30 million in the final bill to include workers without children and an increase for families with more than three children. This change will benefit about 275,000 Minnesota households. Many currently eligible workers and families will receive larger tax credits, and more Minnesotans will be able to qualify.
For more information on how to take advantage of the programs available for Minnesotans, visit gesmn.org/services to connect with a member of the GESMN team.