By WCCO-TV Staff

MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) — Gov. Tim Walz and Lt. Gov. Peggy Flanagan held a ceremonial bill signing Monday with tribal leaders and state lawmakers in honor of a bill affirming Minnesota’s relationship with tribal governments.

“We are working every day to ensure that state government works in a different, better way. A way that understands and honors tribal sovereignty. A way that allows more consistent and productive coordination and communication between state agencies and tribal nations,” the governor said, in a statement.

The bill codifies government-to-government relations, affirming tribal sovereignty, requiring state agencies to have tribal-state liaisons, and mandating tribal-state relations for state leaders and employees.

“For far too long, state government has not worked with or for Native people,” said Flanagan, in a statement. “The Governor and I are committed to changing that, for the long term. I am filled with gratitude for the friendship and partnership – from tribal leaders, from legislators, and from community voices – that got this bill across the finish line and into state law. Today is a historic, important step for the future of tribal state relations in Minnesota.”