St. Paul, MINN. – Senator Scott Dibble, DFL-Minneapolis, today called for greater transparency and accountability in state government by requesting the Senate Republicans’ bonding bill be sent to the Senate Transportation Committee. The Republican proposal includes $143 million in earmarked trunk highway fund projects, $202 million in cash from the general fund, and a new rail safety policy proposal.
“This bill includes transportation projects that have never had a hearing in committee, and drains an unprecedented amount of cash from the trunk highway fund without any discussion in the Senate Transportation Committee about whether this is prudent or not,” said Dibble. “We heard from a bipartisan group of past Senate and House Transportation Finance chairs this summer that earmarking projects sets up a dangerous precedent of picking winners and losers and turning transportation project selection into a political game. The bill shortchanges transit, giving almost no consideration to older, younger or disabled Minnesotans in all parts of the state.”
“This Republican bonding proposal also includes a previously-unheard policy provision regarding rail safety. Rail safety has been and continues to be a priority for my colleagues and me, but an unvetted bonding bill is not the place for new policies that will impact the entire state,” said Dibble.