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Legislative Update; Southwest Light Rail Will be Audited!

Friday, March 4, 2022



Friday, March 4th, 2022 –

Yesterday the House voted on a bipartisan bill to audit the Southwest Light Rail Transit (SWLRT) project. The SWLRT project continues to be a burden to all Minnesota taxpayers and a topic I am sure many have grown tired of. Until recently, the SWRT was supposed to be in service by next year (2023); however, now they say service is not scheduled to begin until 2027. This has been the story time after time with this project; longer delays and more demands for funding. 

Not only are they saying the project will take an estimated three more years than initially planned but that it will take an additional $550 million to complete. This cost has been rising steadily since the project began and has nearly tripled from $1 billion to $2.75 billion. These costs are put directly onto the backs of the taxpayers for a service that has seen ridership plummet.  

The legislature tried to expose some of the very issues causing the problems we are seeing now.  But Governor Mark Dayton vetoed legislation that might have prevented the problems that have blown up the costs of this boondoggle. These were known issues that were hidden from the legislature and the public by a transit-obsessed Governor and a power-hungry incompetent Metropolitan Council.  

It has been over a decade since we began building the light rail, and at $2 billion, it was one of the state's most expensive construction projects in history. With costs now hovering around $2.7 billion and growing to complete this project, we need to take a step back to review this project. Figuring out what has worked and what hasn't. Now we are in a position that if we stop the project entirely, we will owe hundreds of millions of dollars to the Federal Government. But continuing to throw money at Southwest Light Rail with the hope that will fix it is the definition of insanity.  

Choose Freedom, 

Cal Bahr

State Representative, 31B


If you have any questions, please don’t hesitate to contact my office or me. If you have other needs, please email my Legislative Assistant, Grayson, at

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