ST. PAUL – State Representative Tim Miller (R-Prinsburg) said supporters of establishing a new veterans’ home in Montevideo will be pleased to learn that $10 million has been included in a state government finance conference committee report for new veterans’ homes.
“There is little doubt the need exists for a veteran’s home in western Minnesota, and I’m pleased all of our hard work in promoting this proposal has begun to pay dividends,” Miller said. “While there’s no guarantee that Montevideo will receive any or all of this funding, the fact that both the House and Senate have agreed to set aside money for veterans home construction can only be viewed as a positive step.”
A conference committee is called when the Minnesota House and Senate pass similar, but not identical, bills on a particular topic. The goal is for the five representatives and senators who serve on the committee to craft legislation that can be approved by both bodies. Because both the House and Senate agreed to include $10 million to establish a “New Veterans Home Fund” in its conference committee report, it is extremely likely that Governor Dayton will now need to decide whether to allow this funding to occur.
That funding would allow cities to help meet the necessary state funding match for veterans’ home construction. A proposal championed by Rep. Miller has asked the state to contribute $6 million for construction of a facility in Montevideo, as the City of Montevideo and Chippewa County have already secured ways to fund all of that amount to meet the state’s financial requirement. Roughly two-thirds of the costs for a new veterans’ home would come from federal contributions.
Montevideo, Bemidji, and Fillmore County in southeastern Minnesota are the only areas seeking to build a new veterans’ home.