Lawmaker's View: Bonding proposal good for Duluth, needs Duluth's support
Earlier this month the House Capital Investment Committee unveiled its proposed bonding bill, which would fund critical infrastructure, pay for road projects, and help to maintain thousands of state-owned buildings and structures throughout Minne...
Earlier this month the House Capital Investment Committee unveiled its proposed bonding bill, which would fund critical infrastructure, pay for road projects, and help to maintain thousands of state-owned buildings and structures throughout Minnesota. Many refer to the bonding bill as a "jobs bill" because it creates good-paying construction jobs. More importantly, it helps local communities by funding projects they could not otherwise afford without massive costs to local property taxpayers.
The bill put forward by the House is a meat-and-potatoes, common-sense bill. It's not flashy, but it takes care of infrastructure that needs fixing and invests in important regional projects.
For the Duluth area, it includes $4 million for Glensheen Mansion asset preservation. It also includes $6.9 million for the city of Duluth for the reconstruction of Superior Street and the steam plant conversion.
Duluth residents know how important this proposal is. That's why we need the support of DFL representatives from Duluth and the Duluth area - Rep. Jennifer Schultz, Rep. Liz Olson, and Rep. Mary Murphy - when the bill comes to a vote in the coming days.
Rumors at the Capitol indicate that the House Democrats' metro leadership is plotting to withhold votes for the bonding bill and is pressuring legislators to vote against it for political purposes. The bill needs the votes of Reps. Schultz, Olson, and Murphy to get this project done.
Beyond the Glensheen Mansion and the reconstruction of Superior Street, the bill funds a number of priorities that benefit communities across the state, including $120 million for road and transportation infrastructure, $153 million for water and conservation projects, and $364 million for asset preservation. Public Facilities Authority (PFA) funding will help several Minnesota communities upgrade their water-treatment plants, costs that otherwise would be shifted to property taxpayers.
This bill focuses on the basic needs of our state and will create good-paying jobs that will support families.
But we can't get any of this done without bipartisan support. Your community knows how important Glensheen Mansion and Superior Street are. That's why I urge you to contact Reps. Schultz, Olson, and Murphy to urge them to vote for the bill and put the needs of your community first.
State Rep. Ron Kresha is a Republican from Little Falls, Minn.