Minnesota Governor Tim Walz has signed bills addressing needs for everything from high-speed rail service between Duluth and the metro to repair of the state’s deteriorating roadways. He signed, a tax bill that directs funds from a higher gas tax and a new delivery tax directly to the state’s burgeoning transportation needs.
Funding allowing the state to speed up its shift to cleaner, greener energy sources showed up in several areas of the budget including the General Fund. A climate and energy appropriation of $115 million for a State Competitiveness Fund designed to match federal grants for renewable energy projects was signed into law by Gov. Tim Walz on April 18. Governor Walz also signed legislation allocating $240 million for grants to replace lead water lines. Municipalities and other suppliers of residential water systems can apply for the grants.
On June 1 Gov. Walz signed legislation funding a $2.58 billion package of infrastructure projects. Bonds will fund some of the projects and general fund dollars will be use for others.
Here’s how some of those funds will be used:
- $381.1 million to the Public Facilities Authority for 47 water and wastewater projects across the state;
- $326.3 million to the Department of Transportation, including $146 million from bond proceeds for local roads and bridges;
- $233.1 million to the Department of Natural Resources, including $49.7 million for flood hazard mitigation programs;
- $108.6 million to the Metropolitan Council, including $72 million for bus rapid transit projects; and
- $90 million to the Department of Veterans Affairs, including $77.8 million for upgrades at the Hasting Veterans Home Campus.
- $136 million to the University of Minnesota for building renovation and asset preservation
- $134.7 million to Minnesota State for renovations, upgrades and asset preservation
Additional projects include:
- $48.6 million to the Department of Public Safety mostly for local fire or public safety centers,
- $21.6 million to renovate facilities at the St. Peter Regional Treatment Center;
- $14.5 million for improvements to the wastewater treatment plant in Austin;
- $12.8 million to the Pope-Douglas Solid Waste board to switch to single-source recycling;
- $7 million to construct a freight rail car storage facility in Lakeville;
- $4 million to the Indian Health Board for a medical center in Minneapolis;
- $3 million to replace the ice plant and make other improvements to the sports arena and curling club in Chisolm; and
- $2.2 million to the Ain Dah Yung Center in St. Paul for renovations of its emergency shelter.
Dave Martini, MnSPE President said the 2023 Legislature’s investments in infrastructure and public safety offer much-needed improvements to communities across the state.