Skip to main content Skip to office menu Skip to footer
Capital IconMinnesota Legislature

Legislative News and Views - Rep. Chris Swedzinski (R)

Back to profile

Legislative Update (4-24-15)

Friday, April 24, 2015

Dear Neighbors,

The House began debating and passing large finance bills this week as the state’s budget continues to take shape. Among these bills was legislation that makes major investments in our state’s roads and bridges without raising taxes and a bill that aims to make energy cleaner and more affordable.

Transportation Approved by House

The House debated and approved the Road and Bridge act of 2015 on Tuesday. This bill is a major part of our comprehensive, future oriented proposal that ultimately invests $7 billion over the next decade without raising taxes.

As I speak with constituents across our district, I consistently hear about the need to find a long-term solution to address our transportation needs. That’s why I am so encouraged by our approach which makes substantial investments in our transportation infrastructure without increasing the already heavy burden on taxpayers.

Over the next ten years, the Republican proposal prioritizes repairing or replacing 15,500 lane miles for all roads and 330 bridges statewide. This is accomplished through the following investments:


  • $4.03 billion for state roads
  • $1.44 billion for county roads
  • $583 million for municipal roads
  • $282 million for small cities under 5,000
  • $139 million for Greater Minnesota bus services
  • $60 million for township roads & bridges

Our proposal creates a special fund called the Transportation Stability Fund that collects existing proceeds from dedicated tax revenues and deposits them into accounts for each of their dedicated purpose.

There are five accounts that would dedicate a combined $3.078 billion over ten years. This includes revenue from existing sales tax on auto parts, revenue from tax on rental vehicles, revenue from the rental vehicle tax, 50% of existing Motor Vehicle Lease sales tax, and 50% of existing Motor Vehicle Lease sales tax.

We have brought forward a common sense, thoughtful approach to solve our transportation needs and I am hopeful that Governor Dayton and Democrats will show a willingness to work with us on promoting a fiscally responsible solution to address our roads and bridges.

Jobs Growth and Energy Bill Passes House

On Wednesday, the House debated and passed the Job Growth and Energy Affordability omnibus bill. This bill aims to make energy cleaner and more affordable, as well as workforce housing and broadband grant funding to continue job growth and technology expansion in Greater Minnesota.

Included in the bill was a provision I authored that provides more local input into the siting of large solar projects and allow more separation between solar facilities and local residents.

This provision ensures that if a solar farm or project is being built, the solar facilities will need to be at least 400 feet away from the nearest home. There has been a lot of concern regarding property values of homes that are near solar farms and facilities as they have become increasingly popular.

Staying in Touch

If you have friends or family who would be interested in receiving my weekly email update, please direct them to sign up by clicking here.

I welcome the opportunity to speak with about your ideas on how we can make state government work better. I can be reached by phone at 651-296-5374 or via email at


Have a great weekend,