On Monday, the Senate passed legislation that would hold cities accountable to pay their mutual aid agreements and prevent Governor Walz from diverting funds away from education and healthcare to cover cities’ public safety costs that defund the police.
I am a proud supporter of Minnesota’s law enforcement. Our police departments rise to the call of duty every day and make the hard choices necessary to protect our state. This legislation ensures that when one department comes to support another, they can do so without worrying it will negatively impact their budget.
The bill allows cities that provided mutual aid but haven’t been reimbursed for it yet to apply for that payment from the other cities’ Local Government Aid.
This bill has no impact on any city or county that pays their bills as per mutual aid agreements in a timely matter. It only impacts those who are not.
Following the bill’s passage, Governor Walz, via his spokesperson, Mr. Tschann, issued a statement accusing Senate Republicans of voting to defund the police. This was after House Democrats failed to pass their own version of the legislation on the same day.
It is absurd that Governor Walz would accuse the Senate of not supporting Minnesota’s law enforcement. In fact, the opposite is true. This bill ensures police departments will be paid for protecting the public. Since the riots this past summer, Democrats in Minnesota across all levels of government have been calling for a reduction in our police forces, and some have gone as far as demanding their complete removal. Even yesterday, their proposed methods for police funding failed because of Democrat concerns that it gave too much. If the Governor wants to make that accusation, he should first look at facts and put the blame where it belongs.