ST. PAUL, Minn. (AP) — Minnesota Gov. Tim Walz has signed his first executive order, establishing a council on diversity, inclusion and equity.

Walz told reporters Wednesday he’ll chair the council, patterned on a similar council formed by former Gov. Mark Dayton, but expand its scope to include geographic diversity and other considerations. Others members will include people from the governor’s staff and cabinet commissioners.

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Walz says the council will work to ensure that all Minnesotans have the opportunity to fully participate in the development of state policy. He says it will ensure that the “lens of equity” is focused on everything the state does, whether it’s transportation projects or hiring.

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Lt. Gov. Peggy Flanagan says it’s meant to provide “some teeth” to ensure that everyone is seen, heard and valued by the new administration.

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