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Time Nearly Up For Lawmakers To Take Action On Bonus Pay For Frontline Workers

MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) -- A deadline looms for Minnesota lawmakers over money set aside for frontline workers. They've been debating how to split $250 million in bonus pay for frontline workers, but talks seem to still be stuck in limbo.

Lawmakers have been trying to hammer out a plan for these bonuses for weeks now, and Monday is the deadline for the proposal. The problem is, they can't agree on who should qualify, and how much people should get.

As of Thursday, the only thing the panel had agreed to was that people would have to apply for the money, and that those checks wouldn't be taxed by the state.

The group has met for weeks, hearing from ICU nurses, childcare providers, and MnDOT Employees, all who would like to see these checks.

Earlier this week, DFL lawmakers pitched setting up a process for workers to apply. Baseline checks would be $1,500 but would probably shrink depending on the number of applicants. In the DFL plan, qualifying workers would include industries beyond just health care, and those employees would need to work in person without any option to work from home.

Meanwhile, Republicans wanted to prioritize health care workers and nursing home staff who still showed up to work when there were known sick people around them.

Key lawmakers on this panel said they were going to be working through the weekend to try to reach an agreement, but we haven't seen a final proposal yet. Then, it would be up to the full legislature to vote on the proposal.


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