News from Representative Tom Emmer

Dear Friend,

During this holiday season, I hope the recent news about the distribution of vaccines to stop the spread of COVID-19 has brought you and your family hope. As Americans, we weather life’s storms with the resolve that we will overcome.

This is the season of new beginnings and generosity. It is the perfect time of year to reflect and rededicate ourselves to the spirit of our nation, to help our neighbors, and to give back to the country that allows us to be free.

I am blessed to be sharing this special time of year with my wife Jacquie and our seven children. However, as for many, this year was a difficult one for my family. We lost my father, Tom Emmer Sr. unexpectedly, and I mourn for those who know how it feels to have an empty seat at the dinner table. It is important not to lose hope, though. While we lost my father, Jacquie and I also gained a grandson! We could not be happier.

Although this year has been full of challenges, there is still a lot to be thankful for. To all of our men and women in uniform serving at home and abroad, to our first responders and frontline medical workers, and to every family in and around the Sixth Congressional district, I wish you all a very Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year.


Important Update: COVID Relief and Government Funding

Over the last few weeks, I have kept you updated on the status of COVID relief efforts and government funding. We stayed in Washington over the weekend to reach an agreement on additional coronavirus relief funding and yesterday, the House passed legislation to help millions of families and businesses in need.

Yesterday’s package includes important funding to assist the American people, our small businesses, farmers, and the needs of our nation going forward. It includes:

  • A payment of $600 for individuals who make less than $75,000
  • $20 billion for the purchase of vaccines to make them free for all Americans
  • $8 billion for the distribution of vaccines
  • $20 billion to assist states with additional testing
  • $284 billion to reopen and strengthen the Paycheck Protection Program, which provides paychecks to millions of Americans
  • $25 billion in rental assistance
    • The package extends the eviction moratorium until January 31, 2021

Additionally, there were some major developments that my team and I have been advocating for in this package, such as: 

  • $10 million provided for the Farm and Ranch Stress Assistance Network, which I reauthorized in 2018 and have secured full funding for in the past.
  • $250 million for Certified Community Behavioral Health Clinics which I have long been an advocate for. I am an original cosponsor of the Excellence in Mental Health and Addiction Treatment Expansion Act, which extends the Certified Community Behavioral Health Center program.
  • $35 million for the Department of Justice Mentally Ill Offender Treatment and Crime Reduction Act program.
  • $237 million for the Department of Justice Community Oriented Policing Services (COPS) Hiring program. I am the author of the Community OutPost (COP) Outreach and Engagement Act which will provide federal resources to promote improved, community-focused engagement efforts.
  • $10 billion for grants to childcare centers to help providers safely reopen.
  • $82 billion in funding for schools and universities to assist with reopening for in-person learning.
  • $2.75 billion in designated funds for private K through 12 education.
  • $13 billion to support our farmers and agriculture sector.
  • Stopped attacks on mining in Northern Minnesota.

You can read my full statement on my vote here.

Getting Our Youth Back to School

As we work to rebound from the impact of the coronavirus and vaccines are distributed, it’s important we follow the science to ensure the safety of all Minnesotans. Consistently throughout the outbreak, infection rates among children and adolescents have remained low and exposure in PreK-12 buildings has shown that of the 68% of affected schools have reported only one positive case. 

If Minnesota was following a data-driven approach to schools, we would see hundreds of thousands of children return to an in-person educational setting, which would cut down on rising failing grades in schools across the state.

Last week, I joined Congressman Pete Stauber and Congressman Jim Hagedorn, along with state leaders, Minnesota State Senate Majority Leader Senator Paul Gazelka, Minnesota State Senate Deputy Majority Leader Senator Michelle Benson, and Minnesota State House Minority Leader Representative Kurt Daudt to urge Governor Tim Walz to reopen schools across the Minnesota.

We need to get Minnesota kids back to school and allow them to learn in person. We’ve seen an alarming rate of students failing classes across Minnesota, and these closures have disproportionately impacted the most vulnerable among us. For students with disabilities, those from low-income households, English language learners, and those in need of extra assistance, these actions have been a disservice to their educational development.

Read our letter here.

Until next week, if you are in need of assistance or would like to share your thoughts with me, please write me an e-mail here.

To keep up with what we’re doing in Washington, follow me on Twitter and Facebook for more updates!


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