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SF 2650

as introduced - 92nd Legislature (2021 - 2022) Posted on 05/20/2022 01:23pm

KEY: stricken = removed, old language.
underscored = added, new language.

Current Version - as introduced

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A bill for an act
relating to economic development; authorizing payments for frontline workers
whose work put them at risk of contracting COVID-19 during peacetime
emergency; classifying data; requiring a report; appropriating money.

BE IT ENACTED BY THE LEGISLATURE OF THE STATE OF MINNESOTA:

Section 1. new text beginFRONTLINE WORKER PAYMENTS; PUBLIC PURPOSE.
new text end

new text begin This act is intended to provide payments to frontline workers whose work put them at
risk of contracting COVID-19 during the peacetime emergency declared by the governor
in Executive Order 20-01. The legislature finds that payments under this section specifically,
and under the premium pay provisions of the American Rescue Plan Act of 2021 generally,
have a public purpose and benefit the people of Minnesota by:
new text end

new text begin (1) responding to the extraordinary circumstances of the COVID-19 pandemic which
resulted in the peacetime emergency; and
new text end

new text begin (2) compensating workers for working in conditions that, in many cases, exceeded what
was originally contemplated in their employment agreement to ensure our state was able to
continue functioning during the pandemic.
new text end

Sec. 2. new text beginFRONTLINE WORKER PAYMENTS.
new text end

new text begin Subdivision 1. new text end

new text begin Program established; payments authorized. new text end

new text begin To the extent feasible, the
commissioner of revenue, in coordination with the commissioners of labor and industry and
employment and economic development, must make payments to eligible frontline workers
as provided in this section.
new text end

new text begin Subd. 2. new text end

new text begin Frontline sector defined. new text end

new text begin "Frontline sector" means the following sectors:
new text end

new text begin (1) long-term care and home care;
new text end

new text begin (2) health care, excluding physicians;
new text end

new text begin (3) emergency responders;
new text end

new text begin (4) public health, social service, and regulatory service;
new text end

new text begin (5) courts and corrections;
new text end

new text begin (6) child care;
new text end

new text begin (7) public schools, including charter schools, state schools, and higher education;
new text end

new text begin (8) food service, including production, processing, preparation, sale, and delivery;
new text end

new text begin (9) retail, including sales, fulfillment, distribution, and delivery;
new text end

new text begin (10) temporary shelters and hotels;
new text end

new text begin (11) building services, including maintenance, janitorial, and security;
new text end

new text begin (12) public transit;
new text end

new text begin (13) ground and air transportation services;
new text end

new text begin (14) manufacturing; and
new text end

new text begin (15) vocational rehabilitation.
new text end

new text begin Subd. 3. new text end

new text begin Eligible frontline workers. new text end

new text begin (a) An individual is eligible to receive a payment
under this section if the individual:
new text end

new text begin (1) was employed for at least 120 hours in Minnesota in one or more frontline sectors
during the time period beginning March 15, 2020, and ending June 30, 2021; and
new text end

new text begin (2) for the hours worked under clause (1), was not able to telework due to the nature of
the individual's work and worked in close proximity to individuals outside of the individual's
household;
new text end

new text begin (3) meets the income requirement in paragraph (b); and
new text end

new text begin (4) did not collect unemployment insurance benefits for more than 20 weeks on a
cumulative basis during the time period beginning March 15, 2020, and ending June 30,
2021.
new text end

new text begin (b) To qualify for a payment, an individual's adjusted gross income, as defined in section
62 of the Internal Revenue Code, must be less than the following amounts for at least one
of the taxable years beginning after December 31, 2019, and before January 1, 2022:
new text end

new text begin (1) for an individual who was employed in an occupation with direct COVID-19 patient
care responsibilities, $250,000 for a married taxpayer filing a joint return and $150,000 for
all other filers; or
new text end

new text begin (2) for all other individuals, $185,000 for a married taxpayer filing a joint return and
$85,000 for all other filers.
new text end

new text begin Subd. 4. new text end

new text begin Application; verification of eligibility. new text end

new text begin (a) To qualify for a payment under
this section, an individual must apply to the commissioner of labor and industry in the form
and manner specified by the commissioner. As part of the application, an individual must
certify to the commissioner of labor and industry that the individual meets the eligibility
requirements in subdivision 3.
new text end

new text begin (b) As soon as practicable after final enactment of this act, the commissioner of labor
and industry must establish a process for accepting applications for payments under this
section and begin accepting applications. The commissioner must not accept an application
submitted more than 45 days after opening the application period.
new text end

new text begin (c) The commissioner of labor and industry must assist applicants in submitting an
application under this section, including but not limited to:
new text end

new text begin (1) establishing a multilingual temporary help line for applicants; and
new text end

new text begin (2) offering multilingual applications and multilingual instructions.
new text end

new text begin (d) To the extent possible, the commissioners of revenue, employment and economic
development, and labor and industry must verify applicant eligibility for a payment under
this section. If the commissioners lack the information to verify an applicant's eligibility in
a timely fashion, the commissioner of labor and industry must accept the applicant's
self-certification of eligibility in the absence of contrary information.
new text end

new text begin (e) An applicant for a payment under this section may appeal a denial of eligibility under
this subdivision to the commissioner of labor and industry within 15 days of notice of denial.
The commissioner of labor and industry's decision on an appeal is final.
new text end

new text begin (f) The commissioner of labor and industry may contract with a third party to implement
part or all of the application process and assistance required under this subdivision.
new text end

new text begin Subd. 5. new text end

new text begin Eligibility; payments. new text end

new text begin (a) After the deadline for applications under subdivision
4 has elapsed, the commissioner of revenue must determine the payment amount based on
available appropriations and the number of applications received from eligible frontline
workers. The payment amount must be the same for each eligible frontline worker, and
must not exceed $1,500.
new text end

new text begin (b) As soon as practicable, the commissioner of revenue must make payments of the
amount determined under paragraph (a) to all eligible frontline workers who applied in
accordance with subdivision 4.
new text end

new text begin (c) If the full appropriation for payments is not expended after the initial round of
payments under paragraphs (a) and (b), the commissioner of labor and industry must reopen
the application period and allow eligible frontline workers who have not received a payment
to apply for a payment. The commissioner of revenue must make payments of $1,500 for
all eligible frontline workers who apply under this paragraph, until the full appropriation is
expended.
new text end

new text begin (d) The commissioner of revenue may contract with a third party to implement part or
all of the payment process required under this subdivision.
new text end

new text begin Subd. 6. new text end

new text begin Data practices. new text end

new text begin (a) Data collected or created by the commissioner because an
individual has sought information about, applied for, been denied, or received a payment
under this section are classified as private data on individuals or nonpublic data, as defined
in Minnesota Statutes, section 13.02, subdivisions 9 and 12.
new text end

new text begin (b) Data classified as private data on individuals or nonpublic data, including return
information, as defined in Minnesota Statutes, section 270B.01, subdivision 3, may be
shared or disclosed between the commissioners of revenue, employment and economic
development, and labor and industry, and any third-party vendor contracted with under
subdivision 4, to the extent necessary to verify eligibility and administer payments under
this section.
new text end

new text begin Subd. 7. new text end

new text begin Notice requirement. new text end

new text begin (a) No later than 15 days after the application period is
opened under subdivision 4, employers in a frontline sector must provide notice, in a form
approved by the commissioner of labor and industry, advising all workers who may be
eligible for payments under this section of the assistance potentially available to them and
how to apply for benefits. An employer must provide notice using the same means the
employer uses to provide other work-related notices to employees.
new text end

new text begin (b) Notice provided under paragraph (a) must be at least as conspicuous as:
new text end

new text begin (1) posting a copy of the notice at each work site where workers work and where the
notice may be readily observed and reviewed by all workers working at the site; or
new text end

new text begin (2) providing a paper or electronic copy of the notice to all workers.
new text end

new text begin (c) The commissioner of labor and industry may exercise the commissioner of labor and
industry's authority under Minnesota Statutes, section 177.27, subdivision 7, to enforce the
notice requirement in this subdivision.
new text end

new text begin Subd. 8. new text end

new text begin Payments not to be considered income. new text end

new text begin (a) For the purposes of this subdivision,
"subtraction" has the meaning given in Minnesota Statutes, section 290.0132, subdivision
1, and the rules in that subdivision apply for this subdivision.
new text end

new text begin (b) The amount of frontline worker payments received under this section is a subtraction.
new text end

new text begin (c) Frontline worker payments under this section are excluded from income, as defined
in Minnesota Statutes, sections 290.0674, subdivision 2a, and 290A.03, subdivision 3,
paragraph (b).
new text end

new text begin (d) Notwithstanding any law to the contrary, payments under this section must not be
considered income for purposes of determining eligibility or recertifying eligibility for:
new text end

new text begin (1) child care assistance programs under Minnesota Statutes, chapter 119B;
new text end

new text begin (2) medical assistance under Minnesota Statutes, chapter 256B;
new text end

new text begin (3) general assistance, Minnesota supplemental aid, and food support under Minnesota
Statutes, chapter 256D;
new text end

new text begin (4) housing support under Minnesota Statutes, chapter 256I;
new text end

new text begin (5) Minnesota family investment program and diversionary work program under
Minnesota Statutes, chapter 256J; and
new text end

new text begin (6) MinnesotaCare under Minnesota Statutes, chapter 256L.
new text end

new text begin Subd. 9. new text end

new text begin Report. new text end

new text begin No later than 45 days following the end of the application period under
subdivision 4, the commissioners of revenue and labor and industry shall report to the
legislative committees with jurisdiction over economic development policy and finance
about the program established under this section. The report must include:
new text end

new text begin (1) the number of eligible frontline workers who applied, including the number in each
sector and county, and the payment each worker received;
new text end

new text begin (2) if the initial payment to frontline workers under subdivision 5 was less than $1,500,
the additional appropriation needed to provide an additional payment equal to the difference
between $1,500 and the payment amount under subdivision 5; and
new text end

new text begin (3) the number of applications that were denied and the reasons for denial.
new text end

new text begin Subd. 10. new text end

new text begin Procurement. new text end

new text begin The commissioners of labor and industry and revenue are
exempt from the requirements of Minnesota Statutes, chapters 16A, 16B, 16C, and 16E,
and any other state procurement laws and procedures in administering the program under
this section.
new text end

new text begin Subd. 11. new text end

new text begin Appropriations. new text end

new text begin (a) $1,000,000,000 in fiscal year 2022 is appropriated from
the general fund to the commissioner of revenue for payments under this section. This is a
onetime appropriation.
new text end

new text begin (b) $....... in fiscal year 2022 is appropriated from the general fund to the commissioner
of revenue to administer the program under this section.
new text end

new text begin (c) $....... in fiscal year 2022 is appropriated from the general fund to the commissioner
of labor and industry to administer the program under this section and engage in multilingual
outreach and public education about the availability of payments under this section.
new text end

new text begin (d) $....... in fiscal year 2022 is appropriated from the general fund to the commissioner
of labor and industry for a grant to ....... to promote the availability of payments under this
section to frontline workers, which may include subcontracts with other community
organizations with experience with frontline workers. Up to five percent of the total of any
subcontracts may be used for contract administration.
new text end

new text begin EFFECTIVE DATE. new text end

new text begin (a) Unless otherwise specified, this section is effective the day
following final enactment.
new text end

new text begin (b) Subdivision 8, paragraphs (a), (b), and (c), are effective for taxable years in which
a taxpayer received a frontline worker payment. Subdivision 8, paragraph (d), is effective
the day following final enactment, except for a program for which federal approval is
required, changes affecting the program are effective upon federal approval.
new text end