Retail has a great story to tell in Minnesota!

Articles in Category: Policy & Politics

MnRA Celebrates New Organized Retail Crime Law Passed By The Legislature, Signed By The Governor

ThankYou1We are thrilled to share some exciting news with you. After years of efforts and collaboration, we are proud to announce that our organized retail crime (ORC) definition bill has passed through the legislative process and was signed by the Governor this past Friday. This significant development marks a major milestone in our ongoing efforts to address the growing issue of organized retail crime in Minnesota.

The passage of this bill has been a collective achievement, made possible through the strong partnership between the Minnesota Retailers Association (MnRA) and the bill's authors, Representative Zack Stephenson and Senator Ron Latz. We extend our heartfelt gratitude to them for their unwavering commitment to tackling this pressing issue and their dedication to ensuring the safety of consumers, workers, and retailers across our great state.

Our success in advancing this legislation was bolstered by the invaluable support we received from the Minnesota Organized Retail Crime Association, including its leaders Cody Johnson and Taylor Wiechert, and other key stakeholder organizations. Through their expertise and guidance, we were able to deliver a strong message during the legislative process. We extend our sincere appreciation to all those who lent their support and contributed to this issue, including our contract lobbyist Tom Freeman with Faegre Drinker, who worked tirelessly on this bill. In addition, we are most grateful to Charlie Anderson who shared his passion for people and expertise in law enforcement in countless conversations with us, elected officials and other stakeholders.

Addressing organized retail crime has been a long-time priority for Minnesota’s retailers, and for good reason. These criminal activities pose a significant threat to the integrity of our businesses, the safety of our employees and customers, and the overall economic health of our communities. By passing this bill into law, we take a crucial step forward in equipping law enforcement agencies, financial investigators, and prosecutors with the necessary tools to combat and deter these criminal enterprises.

The ORC definition bill will provide a clear and comprehensive framework to identify and prosecute organized retail crime. It will define ORC, establish consequences for offenders, and enable law enforcement agencies to collaborate more effectively with retailers in investigating and preventing these crimes. Furthermore, it will serve as a strong deterrent by sending a powerful message to potential criminals that their actions will not be welcome in our state.

While we celebrate the new law, we recognize that our work is far from over. The implementation and enforcement of this legislation will require ongoing cooperation and coordination among retailers, law enforcement agencies, and the judicial system. MnRA remains committed to actively engaging with our members and partners to ensure the effective implementation of this law and to continue our efforts in combating organized retail crime in Minnesota.

Last and most important, thank you to members for your unwavering support throughout this process. Together, we are making a significant impact on fostering a better retail environment for all of Minnesota.

To celebrate this achievement and express our gratitude for your continued support, we invite retailers and key business partners to join us for a legislative wrap-up event. The event will take place on June 8 at the Minneapolis Cider Company and feature your chance to try or show off your pickleball skills. It will be an excellent opportunity to network, reflect on the session's outcomes, and discuss the implications for our industry moving forward.

Please plan to join us. We appreciate your unwavering support throughout this session, and we invite you to join us in commemorating our achievements and acknowledging the challenges together.




Mn Retailers IMPACT Endorses Candidates

Mn Retailers IMPACT fund says candidates are good for Minnesota consumers, retailers, and communities


Today Mn Retailers IMPACT announced the endorsement of these candidates running for the State Legislature:

Minnesota House

1B - Deb Kiel
6B - Josh Heintzeman
9A - Jeff Backer
10B - Isaac Schultz
12A - Paul Anderson
12B - Mary Franson
13B - Tim O'Driscoll
15A - Chris Swedzinski
16A - Dean Urdahl
16B - Dave Baker
21A - Joe Schomacker
23B - Patricia Mueller
24A - Duane Quam
26A - Gene Pelowski Jr.
26B - Greg Davids
27B - Kurt Daudt
28B - Anne Neu Brindley
29B - Marion O'Neill
30B - Paul Novotny
31B - Peggy Scott
32B - Donald Raleigh
33A - Patti Anderson
37A - Kristin Robbins
44B - Leon Lillie
46B - Cheryl Youakim
48A - Jim Nash
48B - Greg Boe
50A - Heather Edelson
50B - Steve Elkins
57A - Jon Koznick
57B - Jeff Witte
58B - Patrick Garofalo
66B - Athena Hollins

Minnesota Senate

5 - Paul Utke
9 - Jordan Rasmusson
11 - Jason Rarick
12 - Torrey Westrom
13 - Jeff Howe
14 - Tama Theis
15 - Gary Dahms
18 - Nick Frentz
19 - John Jasinski
22 - Rich Draheim
24 - Carla Nelson
26 - Jeremy Miller
27 - Andrew Mathews
28 - Mark Koran
33 - Karin Housley
34 - John Hoffman
35 - Jim Abeler
36 - Roger Chamberlain
37 - Warren Limmer
43 - Ann Rest
48 - Julia Coleman
54 - Eric Pratt
57 - Zach Duckworth
60 - Kari Dziedzic
61 - Scott Dibble

“These candidates have demonstrated an appreciation for what the retail industry offers Minnesota’s economy as the industry supports 750,000 jobs across the State. Each endorsed candidate is a champion for Minnesota consumers, retailers, and our communities,” said Mn Retailers IMPACT treasurer Bruce Nustad.

Mn Retailers IMPACT is funded through personal contributions used to support candidates who appreciate retailer contributions to Minnesota communities.

MnRA asks Frontline Worker Pay Working Group to include frontline retailers for State bonus payments

Below is the full text of the letter to the Frontline Workers Pay Working Group:

August 30, 2021

Frontline Worker Pay Working Group Members:

We have been watching the Frontline Worker Pay Working Group with deep interest, and we appreciate the discovery and thoughtfulness that has been evident during your meetings and testimony.

As consumers each of you have seen first-hand how retailers have stepped up early and throughout the pandemic, working hard on extra cleaning and new ways of retailing to provide a safe shopping experience and work environment. We are proud of how the industry answered the State’s call to donate masks and other PPE when such supplies were desperately needed. In addition, you saw retailers quickly shift operations to offer or enhance curbside pickup, home delivery, online options, and safe in-store shopping based on state, federal and local public health guidance.

From the front of the store serving customers directly, to the vital work in distribution and shipping centers, retail workers have answered the call each day to ensure the needs of families, communities, and all Minnesotans have been met. We truly have seen the customer-serving spirit and work ethic of Minnesota’s retail workers shine!

As you get closer to consensus on program qualifications, we offer these perspectives based on what we have heard from retailers and their workers across the state.

  • Please consider Minnesota’s retail pharmacy workers as healthcare workers. Workers in retail pharmacies have reported for work each day of the pandemic to ensure Minnesotans have access to over-the-counter medications, prescriptions, personal hygiene supplies, and accessible COVID vaccines and testing. Retail pharmacies and their workers have played a recognizable role in the health of all Minnesotans and have proved to be a vital part of the health response to the pandemic, including being frontline partners with the State on vaccination. We ask that you not exclude these workers from your healthcare qualifications.

  • Please consider Minnesota’s convenience store workers as grocery workers. Thousands of convenience store workers clock in every day to ensure there is access to essential products such as gasoline and electric charging as well as grocery items. In some communities and for some Minnesotans convenience stores serve as the most accessible store for fresh, packaged and prepared foods. We ask that you not forget these convenience store workers as you consider grocery worker qualifications.

  • As you continue to discuss program funding, including the potential to leverage other available funding beyond the $250 million, please consider the work of Minnesota’s frontline retail workers who show up every day to meet the needs of our citizens. One estimate brought before the workgroup suggested there are approximately 153,000 workers who make sure we have access to household and personal essentials, clothing and shoes, home office and education technology, home maintenance goods, as well as other physical and mental health/safety items needed across the state. As you continue to learn more about workers who have important roles throughout the pandemic, please consider frontline retail workers who have been serving Minnesotans via in-person shopping, curbside delivery, online servicing, and back-end processing and logistics.

We commend the workgroup for its process and willingness to dig deep and understand Minnesotans and how they were and are impacted by the pandemic. We know the decisions ahead of you are difficult but are also confident your spirit of cooperation will result in a meaningful program for frontline workers.

Thank you for your consideration of retail pharmacy, convenience, and frontline retail workers as you make your decisions.

Bruce Nustad, president
This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Get our Monday retail industry newsletter.

Subscribe to MnRA's e-mail list by providing your e-mail address below. You will receive our "Retail Beat" newsletter every Monday, providing perspective on the latest news impacting retailer and key business partners!

E-mail address:

Live Chat