Money for nursing homes, social programs

The budget approved by the Legislature includes about $1.3 billion in new human services spending, much of it aimed to help struggling nursing homes and long-term care facilities.

About $412 million in new money will go to the Elder Care Waiver program to boost reimbursements for services to Minnesotans needing long-term care. Another $300 million will go to at-risk nursing homes and a $100 million zero-interest loan program will help those in financial trouble.

The legislation also has about $80 million for bonuses to retain workers and there are more efforts to attract new ones.

Other social program support

Minnesota will spend $316 million in the next budget to boost pay and benefits for child care providers state wide. There’s also a $146 million increase for the Child Care Assistance program to help lower income families afford the cost of care.

About $100 million will go toward improving and expanding emergency homeless shelters, with 40 percent of the funding focused on rural parts of the state. Another $30 million will provide services to the unhoused.

The state also is creating a new Department of Children, Youth and Families that will coordinate social services.

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