Reporter | Politics and Government

Before joining the Star Tribune, Van Berkel reported on city and county government in Sarasota, Fla., and public safety and courts in Appleton, Wis. She is a Minnesota native who returned to her home state to work for the Star Tribune in 2014. She's a University of Minnesota graduate and a proud Minnesota Daily alumna. Outside of work, she is usually hiking, biking, camping or planning her next travel adventure. Her home is frequently littered with travel books.

Higher daily expense payments, salaries on tap for Minnesota legislators

House members signed off this week on a $20 increase to their per diem pay, a move GOP legislators disputed.

Senate leader Dziedzic: 'I just listened to what the doctor said and just focused'

DFLer worked from hospital and home as she faced surgery and chemotherapy.

Minnesota first state to allow hourly school workers to seek unemployment benefits

Bus drivers, paraprofessionals and others can apply for unemployment insurance during summer break.

Craig injures ankle, missing vote on debt ceiling deal

She tripped while doing yard work and was scheduled for surgery Thursday.

Minnesota passes major drug changes, from psychedelics task force to legalizing paraphernalia

The state's new drug policies reach far beyond legalizing marijuana.

How did Minnesota Democrats unify to pass sweeping change?

From Social Security tax exemptions to gun restrictions, DFL leaders at the State Capitol held their caucuses together on divisive issues.

Minnesota's paid family and medical leave program becomes law

The benefit program and accompanying payroll tax won't start until 2026.

Walz, Democrats and advocates celebrate $72 billion budget

Republicans say the new budget will make it much more expensive to live in Minnesota.

Legislature ends session by passing largest infrastructure package in state history

Lawmakers sent a $2.6 billion infrastructure package to Gov. Tim Walz's desk on the final day of session.

Legislature passes $1.3B transportation deal with gas tax hike, sending it to Walz

Debate throughout the session has centered on how to fund much-needed fixes to the state's roads, bridges and public transit systems.