Thursday is here, and the holiday weekend is oh-so-close.
In talking about the stakes of the 2022 election on abortion access, Gov. Tim Walz raised the prospect this week of the next governor appointing multiple state Supreme Court justices due to the mandatory retirement age of 70. His warning wasn’t quite spot on. The full picture, reports The Associated Press
, is that only one justice is due to reach that backstop in the next four years. But other justices could retire for other reasons. Either way, you’ll hear more about judicial appointments in the upcoming election because it touches on two big campaign issues the main rivals are hitting hard: abortion law and criminal accountability.
The Star Tribune’s Washington correspondent, Hunter Woodall, highlights Sen. Tina Smith as a “leading voice” on abortion rights after the seismic landscape shift. Smith once had a prominent role at Planned Parenthood.
The Minnesota Office of Higher Education is developing its grant distribution process for $20 million in state funding for ALS research.
The Legislature created the grant program this spring, spurred on by the health decline of a longtime state senator. Iron Range lawmaker David Tomassoni’s battle with ALS brought broader awareness to the neurological disorder. The agency hopes to have parameters set in August and start getting money out the door in the fall. It formally becomes available for use on Friday.
A regulatory crackdown on a health care provider that serves vulnerable adults with disabilities and mental illness could further strain an already fraying safety net. The Star Tribune reports that the state action against Bridges MN will leave 500 adults statewide scrambling for replacement services. The entity plans to appeal its license revocation, which state officials say comes after repeated violations. The Department of Human Services is working through multiple options to serve or place clients elsewhere.
Some of the final COVID-19 relief money at Gov. Tim Walz’s disposal will go toward public safety, mental health and child care programs. Walz announced $40 million in disbursements this week from a fund that the Legislature gave him control over. Forum Communications reporter Dana Ferguson has the rundown
. On Wednesday, Senate Republicans faulted Walz for not putting any extra money into the stressed nursing home, group home and non-emergency medical transportation systems. Reminder: Those items were part of a debate over use of the state’s big surplus but a budget deal collapsed in May and special session negotiations hit a wall in June.
Programming note: your Capitol View authors will take an early-July breather and return Wednesday with a fresh edition.