Today, Rep. Jamie Becker-Finn (DFL-Roseville) released the following statement regarding the death of her father, former State Senator Skip Finn of Cass Lake:
“It is one of the greatest honors of my life to carry on my dad’s legacy in the Minnesota Legislature. My dad instilled in me a dedication to my community and people, and a desire to work towards taking care of those most in need and protecting our environment now and in the future. I thank everyone for their support and patience as our family deals with this tremendous grief.”
His formal obituary is below:
Harold R. “Skip” Finn
Age 69, of Cass Lake, MN, died Thursday, May 17, 2018 at the University of Minnesota Medical Center in Minneapolis. A memorial meal will be held 6:00 p.m., Monday, May 21, 2018, at Veterans Memorial Building, 6599 -69th Avenue NW, Cass Lake, MN.
Skip was born on October 27, 1948, in Cass Lake, MN, the son of Harold “Haley” and Elverna Finn. He was raised in Cass Lake and attended Cass Lake Public Schools. He was the first in his family to attend college, at Moorhead State College and the University of Minnesota. He majored in both Sociology and American Indian Studies, and in 1971 was the first student to receive a degree in American Indian Studies at the U. He later received a law degree from the U of M in 1979.
Skip was a member of the Leech Lake Band of Ojibwe. Cass Lake was always his home. He worked as an attorney and small business owner and was the first Native American to serve as a Minnesota State Senator.
Above all else, Skip loved his family. He adored his grandchildren. He loved hunting, fishing, and ricing, and passing those traditions on to others. He also loved the Minnesota Vikings and DFL politics. He didn’t want a “big braggy” obituary but it should be noted for the record that he was brilliant, funny, and incredibly dedicated to taking care of his family. He had the ability to see the potential in everyone and encouraged others to see the same. Skip mentored many DFL and Native political candidates throughout the years, including his daughter, State Representative Jamie Becker-Finn.
He was preceded in death by his parents and siblings Mike Finn and Holly Finn. Skip is survived by his wife of 37 years, Teri, daughter Jamie (Gabe) Becker-Finn of Roseville, MN, son Jacob Finn of Las Vegas, NV, beloved grandchildren Koivu and Vida Becker-Finn of Roseville, MN, siblings Jerry Finn, Susie Morris, Pat Finn, Randy Finn, Jewell Finn, Deb Suchon, Mick Finn, best friend Mike Schmid, and many much loved nieces and nephews. ...
“To paraphrase the late Hubert H. Humphrey, the moral test of government is how we treat the most vulnerable members of society — our children, our seniors and those who are ill or have disabilities. We are currently failing that test, especially when it comes to people with disabilities.
Every year, people with disabilities, as well as their families and caregivers, come to the Capitol asking for adequate funding so they can live their lives with dignity. They dutifully follow the political action handbook, visiting legislators to share their personal stories, sending letters and homemade cards, making phone calls and attending rallies in the Capitol rotunda. Despite all this, nearly every year, when the final deals are made behind closed doors by legislative leaders, these people are mostly forgotten.
The reality is that, at any moment, a stroke, accident or disease could strike a member of anyone’s family. Suddenly you would be thrown into a situation where you or a loved one would require round-the-clock medical care in order to live a safe and meaningful life. Is this safe and meaningful life something that should only be available to those with personal wealth? Or is this safe and meaningful life something all people deserve, regardless of financial means? I strongly believe that it’s the latter.
I have had the great privilege of visiting many group homes in my district. In my conversations with residents and staff, I have heard about a diversity of individual needs but with the same shared message: Individuals with disabilities want to live with dignity just like anyone else, and the workers who care for them want to be paid high enough wages so that they can support their own families. Unfortunately, the average direct care worker in Minnesota currently earns just $12.32 per hour. These wages are tied closely to the reimbursement rate for services, which has historically not been funded adequately. Many workers are eventually forced to leave the profession, despite their desire to continue serving their clients. When the grocery store down the street pays $14 per hour, workers have little choice.
Right now, home and community based services for people with disabilities are facing a funding crisis even more catastrophic than previous years. Due to a recent decision at the federal level, the system is facing a 7 percent cut in reimbursement rates that will take effect on July 1, 2018. This cut will result in an inability to hire and retain qualified staff, as well as a reduction of services available to individuals. This could ultimately result in some direct care service providers no longer remaining operational. The people who currently rely on those providers, and their families, would be left with very few options.
We can stop this from happening by supporting an increase in the reimbursement rate at the state level, whether by passing House File 3191 as a standalone bill or by including this funding in this year’s health and human services omnibus bill. We as individuals must make the dignity of our neighbors a priority, and demand the same of our leaders. When the final deals are made, we must not forget to govern not only with our brains but also with our hearts. There is no time like the present to pass this moral test.” ...
Our family adopts our local park so today we went to work! We picked up trash and hauled out junk. These mighty kids worked together to roll three heavy tires to the trail entrance! We also found car parts, lots of food wrappers and plastic bags.
We now have less than five weeks left in the legislative session. Hopefully, it will actually feel like spring by the time we adjourn on May 21st! It’s been a busy time at the Capitol as we’re approaching the third and final committee deadline, where most finance bills need to be passed out of t...
Following a request from some of us who represent residents of metro area counties, there will now be a public DNR deer plan meeting in St Paul this coming Monday! If you are a deer hunter or care about the long term health and sustainability of our wild deer herd, please attend to learn more and ask questions!
Monday, April 23, 6-8pm DNR Headquarters 500 Lafayette Road St. Paul, MN 55155
Minnesota Deer Hunters Association Minnesota Chapter of Backcountry Hunters & Anglers ...
Comments are being accepted through Wednesday, May 9, on a new deer plan that sets a statewide harvest target, increases citizen participation in deer management and outlines ways to keep the herd and habitat healthy.Companion meetings to learn more about the plan are scheduled in 35 communities thr...