Bonding bill snarled in transit

The Bonding Bill was heard in the Transportation and Public Safety Committee this week. The bill was referred to the committee after DFLers forced the GOP to refer the bill to the committee. The Senate DFL had major concerns that the bill had significant transportation spending, but had not been vetted by the Transportation Committee. There are over $800 million dollars with much of it earmarked for specific projects in the bonding bill. In committee, the MnDOT and DFL members spoke against the earmarking practice as it is an inefficient use of resources, it eliminates transparency in the project selection process, and it will undercut the long-term stability of the Highway User Tax Distribution Fund.

A bonding bill is not the solution to Minnesota’s long term transportation funding gap. There is bipartisan agreement that our state has a $6 billion-dollar funding gap over the next 10 years. The Senate DFL has passed multiple bills that addressed this gap with comprehensive, dedicated, sustainable funding to ensure our roads, bridges, and transit are taken care of now and in the future. Using onetime funding does not take care of our transportation funding needs, and leaves many Minnesotans using roads and bridges that are falling into disrepair.

The bill was laid over in the Transportation and Public Safety Committee. Its future is uncertain. (SF 210)

Senate DFL Media