Minnesota DFL lawmakers announce $100M public safety proposal

Monday, Minnesota House DFL lawmakers announced a $100 million public safety proposal in advance of the 2022 legislative session.

Lawmakers issuing the proposal say the plan will incorporate funding for community nonprofits that address violence prevention, community policing grants, crime investigation grants, opiate epidemic response grants, body camera grants, a POST Board investigator investment, and a POST Board alternative licensure.

The full proposal breakdown can be viewed here.

"House DFLers are delivering a comprehensive package with necessary funding, innovative tools, and thoughtful collaboration with local mayors, police chiefs, and prosecutors to help enhance safety in communities across the state," Rep. Carlos Mariani (DFL-St. Paul), chair of the House Public Safety and Criminal Justice Reform Committee, said in a statement.

Of the proposal, Minnesota House Speaker Melissa Hortman said, "All Minnesotans deserve to be safe in their communities—no matter where we live or what we look like—and House DFLers are focused on addressing our public safety challenges. We are focused on innovative, proven solutions that fund our law enforcement and invest in community-led crime prevention efforts. We will continue to work in partnership with Chiefs of Police, Sheriffs, rank and file officers, prosecutors, community advocates, and victims to ensure Minnesota has a public safety system that protects everyone."

Following the announcement Monday, Senate Majority Leader Jeremy Miller (R-Winona) released the following statement in response to the public safety proposal:

"Senate Republicans will make communities safer by funding more police officers, holding violent criminals accountable for their actions, and ensuring victims receive the justice they deserve. It’s good to hear Democrats finally talking about crime, and nonprofits and volunteers are amazing resources, but they aren’t equipped to address the high levels of violent crime we’re seeing in Minnesota. Law enforcement needs tools, resources, and respect from political leaders to keep us all safe."

The new legislative session begins Monday, Jan. 31. The House Public Safety and Criminal Justice Reform Committee plans to hold public hearings about the proposal during the early days of the session.