April 17, 2020
Governor Expands Outdoor Recreation Opportunities

Today Governor Walz expanded allowable outdoor recreational activities in Executive Order 20-38. The order--taking effect tomorrow (Saturday, April 18) at 5:00 a.m.--allows Minnesotans to enjoy outdoor activities while maintaining social distancing guidelines including:
  • Maintaining 6-foot social distancing
  • Avoiding crowded areas
  • Staying close to home.

Some of the facilities that are reopening or remaining open under Executive Order 20-38 are:
  • Bait shops for live bait
  • Outdoor shooting ranges and game farms
  • Public and private parks and trails
  • Golf courses and driving ranges
  • Boating and off-highway vehicle services, including:
  • Marina services
  • Dock installation and other lake services
  • Boat and off-highway vehicle sales and repair, by appointment only

Outdoor recreational equipment retail stores remain closed.

The Governor also announced that April 25 from 10:00 a.m. - 2:00 p.m., Minnesota is organizing a homemade cloth mask drive. Participants are encouraged to drop off masks at local fire stations.

Minnesota Retailers Association Releases Critical Next Steps Plan

Today, the Minnesota Retailers Association released guidance to the Governor, Legislature, and retail businesses throughout Minnesota about a phased approach to re-opening business across the state. We look forward to work closely with the Governor, elected officials, and retailers on important next steps that both balance public health and economic health as well.

Phase 1 – Immediately we request that Gov. Walz and state officials take action on the following:

  • Make all organizations impacted by COVID-19 eligible for the State DEED Emergency Loan Program;

  • Delay May 15 business property tax payments 60 days and assist impacted local governments;

  • Extend and increase funds for the Federal Paycheck Protection Program;

Phase 2 – In the short term, we believe strongly that the following actions can be commenced:

  • Open up curbside shopping and delivery so main street retailers in every Minnesota community can generate some cash flow;

  • Take action to expand widespread COVID-19 antibody testing and tracing critical to getting Minnesotans back to work;

Phase 3 – In the mid-term, we believe retailers should be permitted for the following:

  • Let stores reopen to consumers under social distancing store best practices;

  • Ultimately, we recognize that there is a “new normal” for Minnesotans and we want to shift business to be as accessible and successful after dealing with serious challenges during the “Stay At Home” order.

Click here for a PDF version of the full plan.

Yesterday morning, 2019 MnRA Board Chair Lonnie McQuirter, owner of 36 Lyn Refuel Station, explained to the Senate Tax Committee the importance of delaying the May business property tax payment amid COVID-19 pandemic. Watch the testimony here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2HXnyYvIHlE.
MnRA's COVID-19 resource page for retailers updated daily at https://www.mnretail.org/covid-19. Visit the page for state and federal updates as well as links to resources.

As a reminder, MnRA offers a 30 minute call every Monday where we summarize bills and talk about the week ahead at the Legislature. Join us for those calls when you are able by RSVPing to Savannah Sepic at savannah@mnretail.org.

* Publication note: Distribution of this issue of Retail At The Capitol has been expanded beyond our normal members-only distribution list given the importance of the updates surrounding COVID-19. If you do not normally get this publication and would like to contact us at info@mnretail.org .
MnRA's Government Relations Team
MnRA is proud to represent Minnesota's diverse and vital retail industry. Here is your team dedicated to helping you connect with elected officials and telling the story of retail:
Savannah Sepic
Government Relations Manager,
Minnesota Retailers Association
Tom Freeman
Government Relations Consultant,
Faegre Drinker
Bruce Nustad
Minnesota Retailers Association
Minnesota Retailers Association
400 Robert Street North, Suite 1540
St. Paul, MN 55101
Tel. (651) 227-6631
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