Sheriff Rose testifies at Capitol to help families of fallen officers
A few years ago, a tragedy occurred in Dodge County when Capt. Loring Guenther passed away from a sudden heart attack.
After seeing how well the funeral was run and the amount of support that was given to his family from the Minnesota Law Enforcement Memorial Association, Sheriff Scott Rose knew he wanted to be involved with the organization.
And he did just that.
“They were a huge part of his funeral and honoring his sacrifice. I will never forget it,” Rose said.
Since joining the organization as a board member, the association has continued to do many great things for families who lost loved ones as members of law enforcement across the state.
One thing that Rose highlighted was the fact that they were able to get a bill approved at the state last year, which created license Law Enforcement Memorial License Plates.
“Being able to help get the license plates approved was probably the highlight of my career,” Rose explained.
Like other speciality license plates, anyone with a passenger vehicle, one-ton pick up truck, or a self-propelled RV, can buy the plates.
For the association, having these plates available for those in the state is huge, as a $25 contribution is made to LEMA, for each plate that is bought. An additional $5 is also given to LEMA, for each time someone renews their plates.
In the first year of being available, 2,132 plates were bought, meaning they raised $53,000 to help law enforcement families, when their loved ones make the ultimate sacrifice.
Recently, Rose and other members of the Association testified at the State Capitol to get an amendment passed to the bill, which would allow the association to do what they intended on doing, and that is help victims’ families not just when it comes to funerals.
“The reason for us testifying this past week was to get an amendment passed to the bill regarding fund distribution. The way the original bill was interpreted, the state said they would reimburse LEMA for funeral expenses with these funds. We explained that this was not the intent of the bill, that LEMA funding needs go well beyond the funerals,” Rose explained.
Rose said that the request was to have the fund be paid out to LEMA each year in one lump sum. LEMA would annually provide a report on where funds were used within the mission of the organization.
During the Transportation hearing, there was no opposition, and their hope is that they will be able to get the bill amended before the end of the legislative session.