Improving Infrastructure

Bonding

The Legislature did not pass an infrastructure investment bill in 2024. The Senate and House DFL majorities proposed a two-bill package, one containing $930.048 million in general obligation bond funding (the “Finance SF 5251 5/16/2024” column in the linked spreadsheet) and the other containing $38.7 million in general fund expenditures (the “Finance SF 5201 5/16/2024” column in the linked spreadsheet), but Senate and House GOP leaders were not willing to provide the GOP votes necessary to reach the three-fifths supermajority vote in both chambers that is required to pass a law issuing general obligation bonds. GOP leaders tied their provision of those votes to large and unrealistic demands, and never provided their $150 million half of the $300 million for individual members’ local project priorities that was set aside within the $930 million bill.

That two-bill package would have funded many pressing state agency priorities, from the renovation of campus buildings across the University of Minnesota and Minnesota State systems to the construction of a new Bureau of Criminal Apprehension regional office and laboratory in Mankato, along with a wide range of critically-important local projects across the state, from flood hazard mitigation in Moorhead to bridge repairs in Minneapolis and a new water treatment plant in Elysian.

When it became clear at the end of the legislative session that caucus leaders would not reach an agreement to pass an infrastructure package containing general obligation bond funding, the Senate and House DFL majorities instead pursued the passage of a bill containing $71 million in general fund expenditures. That bill would have funded a range of important projects, from asset preservation work by the Departments of Natural Resources, Human Services, Veterans Affairs, and Corrections to the construction of a wastewater industrial pretreatment facility in Litchfield. The bill passed the House a few minutes prior to the midnight deadline on May 19, the last working day of the legislative session, but did not pass the Senate prior to that deadline.

Senate DFL Media