Regional Fire Training Facility Project Approved

As a part of the final state budget agreement, Governor Dayton signed a Capital Investment Bill that will invest $500 million in construction projects around the state. Commonly known as “bonding,” capital investment is the process by which the state issues bonds to fund public projects that have a state or regional significance. A bonding bill is a quick way to jumpstart the economy. Shovel-ready projects that are included in the bill will get Minnesotans back to work.
One project that will be a huge benefit to our region is the East Metro Regional Fire Training Facility. This facility would be located just northeast of Hill-Murray School, and will not only meet the many needs for training our east metro firefighters, but it will also be a cost savings for local departments.
I have been working with Maplewood Fire Chief Steve Lukin, Oakdale Fire Chief Jeff Anderson, North Saint Paul Fire Chief Scott Duddeck, representatives from Century College, and Maplewood officials on this project and I thank them for their hard work on this proposal. I would also like to thank Rep. Leon Lillie for carrying the companion bill in the House of Representatives and my Republican colleagues that made this legislation a true bipartisan effort.
Other significant projects include:
• $25 million for University of Minnesota (U of M) projects
• $51.3 million for the Physics/Nanotechnology Building at the U of M
• $30 million for Minnesotan State Colleges and University projects
• $50 million for flood mitigation
• $17 million for Natural Resources asset preservation
• $4 million for asset preservation and exhibit renewal at the Minnesota Zoo
• For a summary on the Bonding Bill, visit and click on “2011 Special Session Budget Bills”
This bonding bill positively impacts construction workers, college and university students, and citizens of the communities who will seek economic gains as a result of this bonding bill. I appreciate Gov. Dayton’s efforts to pass a bonding bill and I am looking forward to seeing our community utilize the fire training facility for years to come.
Next session I will be working on two possible projects in our area. The first is a request from the City of Oakdale for a Veterans Memorial at the Oakdale City Hall at the Richard Walton Park. The second project is a request from the City of Maplewood to renovate and equip the former St. Paul’s Monastery as a regional safety and health service center.
As always, please contact me with questions or suggestions about any issue. Please visit my Senate website at I also encourage you to visit me at the Capitol, or let me know if you’d like me to stop by your house or apartment. Also, please tune in to my local cable TV show, “Your Capitol: What’s Up?,” which appears on public access channels 15 and 16.

Senator Chuck Wiger
Chuck Wiger represents District 43, which includes portions of Ramsey and Washington counties in the northeastern Twin Cities metropolitan area.

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