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Legislative News and Views - Rep. Dale Lueck (R)

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Update re: Cuyuna funding and more

Friday, June 02, 2017

Dear Neighbor,

In my last email I touched upon elements of the tax and transportation bills. An important part of the transportation package was also included in the capital investment bill, commonly referred to as the bonding bill.

This year’s bonding bill puts $987 million toward job sustaining construction projects across Minnesota. The bill primarily consists of funding for roads and bridges, municipal water infrastructure, as well as state agency and higher education asset preservation.

Of special interest to our area is $3.6 million in infrastructure improvements for the Cuyuna Country State Recreation Area. The funds will move the current mountain bike trail system from one of the best in the nation to a world-class asset.

The funding will allow completing the second phase of a long-range plan. It builds upon the $600,000 we secured in the 2015 Legacy Amendment bill.

It has taken years of hard work by the local community to bring this about. Thank you to all that have worked so hard make this effort a success. This is a major win for our region’s tourism industry and the local economy.

As I mentioned earlier, transportation was a major focus of the bonding bill, receiving the lion’s share of funding at $254.4 million – more than 25 percent of the total bill –including:

  • $116 million goes to the Local Road Improvement Fund Program
  • $71 million for rail grade crossings
  • $49.2 million for local bridge work

Municipal water and sewer projects also received strong support, with $172.9 million provided for those purposes. Statewide asset preservation received $112 million and another $212 million is targeted directly at state college and university facilities.

On a final note, you are likely aware of the governor’s recent unconstitutional action that attempts to dissolve the state Legislature by line-item vetoing funding for the Minnesota House and the Senate for the next four years. 

The Legislature is seeking legal counsel to resolve this unprecedented constitutional crisis created by the governor’s impertinent action. 

Our state Constitution provides for three co-equal branches of government. Please be assured that I will continue to work on behalf of the citizens of District 10B and will not allow the governor to extinguish your voice and representation in St. Paul.

Sincerely,

Dale

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