Sensing an imminent finish to their legislative session, Minnesota lawmakers took stock Friday of accomplishments and potential campaign liabilities in a year marked by Democratic drives to boost the minimum wage and target school bullying as well as bipartisan efforts to legalize medical marijuana, fix public infrastructure and deliver tax cuts using surplus money.
When it comes to the $846 million construction borrowing package being debated at the Capitol, many wonder if it’s too big to fail. Or in the case of Gov. Mark Dayton, is it too big to veto?
A clause in a construction borrowing package related to home sprinklers could doom the full package. Gov. Mark Dayton warned Monday that he would veto the full bonding bill over attempts to dump a building code requirement.
In a preview of the floor debate ahead, a Minnesota House committee has advanced a plan to have the state finance $1.1 billion in construction projects amid misgivings over priorities. The plan combines cash financing and borrowing.
The Minnesota Senate’s proposal for publicly backed construction projects totals more than $1.1 billion in combined borrowing and cash-financed projects. The proposal released Monday calls for borrowing of $846 million and about $200 million in cash from the state’s surplus.
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Gov. Mark Dayton is pitching almost $1 billion in bonds for the state to take on to fund improvements in areas like higher education and infrastructure in Minnesota. Dayton introduced his proposal for a $986 million bonding bill for the state in the 2014 budget Wednesday.
Lawmakers weighing where to send public construction aid are touring several Minnesota cities with projects in the 2014 mix. Members of the Senate Capital Investment Committee are headed to eight cities this week after spending three days on the road earlier in the month.
Upgrades for regional civic centers, construction at the Minneapolis Veterans Home and another phase of the Capitol renovation will all be part of a borrow-to-build package Gov. Mark Dayton intends to release next week.
Gov. Mark Dayton says finishing the restoration of Minnesota’s Capitol is a top priority for state construction projects in the coming two years.
Promoters of civic center expansions, a light-rail line, a minor-league ballpark and other economic development projects have submitted about 90 applications for a $47.5 million state business development fund.
In a Minnesota Capitol struck with stadium fever, other work stands between legislators and their session finish line.
Minnesota lawmakers are taking a day off as they prepare for a flurry of activity at the start of next week.