ST. PAUL, MN – Early Tuesday morning the Minnesota Senate adjourned its second Special Session. Legislators approved several policing reforms but failed to pass a bonding bill. In response, Senator Chuck Wiger (DFL-Maplewood), released the following statement.
“I’m proud of our ability to come together and act on the police reform issues in a bipartisan manner, but we have more work to do. These efforts will continue, and we need to further address disparities in education, health care, jobs, and other structural issues facing Minnesota’s communities of color. Together, we accomplish more.
It’s very unfortunate that the bonding bill didn’t pass. The public works-infrastructure package, which also stimulates hundreds of jobs and positive economic impact, ultimately had broad bipartisan support in the Senate. However, there weren’t enough votes to pass it in the House.
I will continue to advocate for higher education, wastewater treatment, housing, and local needs for Century College, Lake Links Trail, the County Rd J-Intst. 35E interchange, and other infrastructure needs including needed projects in Birchwood and Willernie.
Once again, a tax bill containing a variety of proposals didn’t get enough bipartisan support. I hope we reach agreement on a future bill that includes two measures I’m authoring: a sales tax exemption on building materials for a new fire station in north Maplewood, and allowing residents of Oakdale to decide whether to authorize a local sales tax to pay for proposed public works and public safety facilities.
We also need to provide more funding for our school’s as they prepare for the upcoming school year. Recognizing the continued impact of COVID-19, schools will need to be prepared for a combination of in-person and distance learning. Preparation had been ongoing throughout the summer. It’s imperative that we protect the health of our students, teachers and staff. That means acting responsibly and safely and providing needed resources to achieve this.”