St. Paul, MN - Today, as part of a bipartisan agreement achieved by DFL legislative leaders, the Minnesota House concurred with the Senate on House Files 669 and 670, delivering $2.6 billion in capital investment for jobs and local projects throughout the state. Both bills are now on their way to Governor Walz for his anticipated signature.
“Having finally reached an agreement on capital investment, we can now deliver sorely-needed funding to communities across the state that have been waiting on shovel-ready projects,” said Rep. Fue Lee (DFL - Minneapolis), author of the bills and Chair of the House Capital Investment Committee. “Our bills take care of what we already have while lifting up those too often left behind when it comes to capital investment. It’s about much more than numbers on a spreadsheet, or even bricks and mortar - these investments are about strengthening communities throughout Minnesota for generations to come.”
The $2.6 billion investment in funding for jobs and long-awaited infrastructure projects across the state includes $1.5 billion in General Obligation (GO) bonds and $1.12 billion in cash funding. Legislation utilizing GO bonds, like HF 669, requires a supermajority in both chambers to pass. The Minnesota House had previously sent both bills to the Senate in March, where Senate Republicans had blocked support until last weekend’s bipartisan agreement.
“Minnesotans deserve safe, strong, and inclusive communities — and updating our infrastructure is part of how we make that happen. High-quality infrastructure delivers the essential services Minnesotans rely on and contributes to our economic security and well-being,” said Speaker Melissa Hortman. “These bills are full of important infrastructure projects that will strengthen our communities and create jobs — helping Minnesota be successful now and into the future.”
To craft these bills, the House Capital Investment Committee spent a total of 14 days on the road in the fall of 2021, traveling 2,369 miles, visiting over 80 cities, and hearing hundreds of project presentations. This was in addition to numerous in-session committee hearings. The resulting legislation takes care of what we have, leverages federal funds that are available for certain projects, restores and protects our natural spaces, funds critical infrastructure such as water and transportation systems, and notably invests in BIPOC-led nonprofits that provide essential community services.
“There is one legislator who has been working tirelessly for years to pass a statewide capital investment bill, a legislator who saw their hopes and dreams for a bill dashed over and over again due to partisanship, but never stopped working or gave up faith,” said House Majority Leader Jamie Long. “House Capital Investment Committee Chair Rep. Fue Lee has gone above and beyond for the state of Minnesota, and we all owe him a debt of gratitude for his hard work. This bill would not have happened without the leadership of Rep. Lee.”
Video of today’s floor debate can be found on the House Public Information YouTube channel.