Last Friday, the House passed the Transportation Finance Omnibus Bill that invests $6 billion over the next decade, with $2 billion being spent in the next two years alone, without raising the gas tax. The bill is funded through bonds and a re-appropriation of auto-related taxes to be spent exclusively on transportation projects. Using current funds to pay for road and bridge improvements at a time that the state is experiencing a $1.6 billion surplus is common sense. There is no need to raise additional revenue.
Some key provisions in the bill that benefit Greater Minnesota:
Broken down by county:
Additionally, the House passed the Education Finance Omnibus Bill, which increases funding for our students and schools by $1.1 billion, including more than $300 million for early learning programs; $22 million for a targeted academic achievement initiative that funds before school, afterschool, and summer programs to help low-income students who are falling behind; and $40 million for enhanced school readiness aid. These new funding levels will help in closing the achievement gap.
Other highlights include:
Earlier this week, the House passed the Agriculture Omnibus Bill. This bill focuses on supporting this important industry by investing in the following priorities:
Additionally, the House passed the Higher Education Omnibus Bill which prioritizes college affordability through public school tuition freezes and reductions, accountability through student loan debt counseling, and accessibility to students previously unable to attend higher education programming, including a provision I authored that continues funding to a pilot program established last session that provides post-secondary education options for young adults with mental disabilities.
The House also passed the Public Safety Omnibus Bill funding the state’s law enforcement sector and providing Minnesotans with a core function of state government: keeping its citizens safe.
Reforms in the bill include:
These bills will be debated further in a conference committee with the Senate before reaching the Governor’s desk for his consideration.
If you ever have any questions, comments, or concerns regarding any issue related to state government, please feel free to contact me at either 651-296-8237, or firstname.lastname@example.org.