RCLLG February Newsletter

Read our past newsletters!

Newsletter Content:
1. February 12 Meeting Summary
2. March Program Save the Date
3. Land Use On-Demand Sessions
4. AARP Community Grants Available
February Legislative Update Meeting
Focus on Mental Health
Last Friday, February 12, we held our first RCLLG member’s meeting of the year. This was a ‘Legislative Update’ that featured eight of our state legislators speaking on their legislative priorities, particularly as they relate to addressing the growing mental health crisis. Our guests for the morning were:

  • Senator John Marty, District 66
  • Senator Chuck Wiger, District 43
  • Senator Mary Kunesh, District 41
  • Representative Amy Wazlawik, District 38B
  • Senator Sandra Pappas, District 65
  • Representative Dave Pinto, District 64B
  • Representative Peter Fisher, District 43A
  • Representative Rena Moran, District 65A
Overview of RCLLG’s Collective Action Work

In 2020, our organization decided that it needed to focus on collective work – how could RCLLG help lift up their individual communities? Members were surveyed and a variety of issues were presented, with mental health support chosen as our focus. In October 2020, we held a roundtable panel discussion featuring service providers from the county. This helped us identify gaps and resources needed.

Legislative Update

While the eight legislators presented their mental health priorities, it became evident how mental health is a complex issue with great intersectionality between the education system, police and public safety, healthcare system, social and racial justice, equity, and other systems. It was evident in the legislative updates, discussion, and in the chat that we need not a siloed approach focused on prevention, but rather a systemic approach connecting these pieces together.

Other focuses included how to support childcare, early learning, law enforcement, and other workers to ensure they are receiving mental health supports. Telehealth was also an issue brought up multiple times in that we should continue to invest in this successful practice.

During the updates, RCLLG members had the opportunity to ask questions. It was discussed what legislation can reverse suicides and overdoses, what can be done to strengthen our police force, and how can we address the mental/emotional wellbeing of educators. Funding is central to many of these issues.
How Can We Help?

To conclude the meeting, we asked legislators how we, as RCLLG members, can support their legislative work. Rep. Moran suggested being testifiers on upcoming bills around mental health, education, and other relevant topics. Sen. Kunesh suggested reaching out to elected officials to share our stories – being advocates for good, positive change and how it impacts our individual communities.
Thank you to those who attended!
March Program - Save the Date!
Our March program will continue the conversation on the Collective Action Workgroup's efforts around mental health. How can RCLLG members engage themselves and contribute to this group’s work? What can individual cities do? How can we measure our initiatives? We'll discuss how we can create tangible action steps to further the Collective Action Group's goals.

Friday, March 12 | 7:30 - 9:00 AM

Mark your calendar! More details to come
A Resource to Support Your Community’s Planning:

Land Use On-Demand Sessions are now available!
Check out our online library of on-demand sessions covering the most popular topics for those new to the field, looking for a refresher or looking to expand knowledge on a specific topic. 

Watch anytime, from anywhere for a great value. Choose from individual breakout session(s), the main session “Planning & Zoning: The Essential Elements” or the All Access pass, which gives you full access to all the sessions.
AARP Community Challenge
A grant program to make communities more livable for people of all ages with tangible improvements that jump-start long-term change.
AARP invites you to submit applications for quick-action projects that can help your community become more livable by improving public spaces, transportation, housing, civic engagement, coronavirus recovery, diversity and inclusion, and more.
Applications must be submitted through www.aarp.org/communitychallenge and are due by April 14, 2021, 8:00 p.m. ET. Projects must be completed by November 10, 2021.
AARP has committed at least $2M to the grants in 2021, even more than in previous years. Since 2017, the AARP Community Challenge has awarded 560 grants, including 13 for projects in Minnesota, that have demonstrated the program’s ability to:
  • Leverage additional funds and support from public and private organizations;
  • Advance change and overcome policy barriers; and
  • Lead to new relationships, awareness and engagement.
Learn more and apply today at www.aarp.org/communitychallenge!

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If you have any questions about RCLLG, your membership, or news listed above, please email RCLLG@fusionLP.org.

Please note that GTS Educational Events is now Fusion Learning Partners! Due to this name change, the RCLLG email address and website address have also changed. 
Visit the RCLLG website and follow us on social media!
Ramsey County League of Local Governments | https://fusionlp.org/rcllg/