$998M bonding bill falls short in Senate on final day of legislative session

[anvplayer video=”4906366″ station=”998122″]

An omnibus bonding bill failed to move past the Minnesota Senate in a final vote Sunday evening, effectively blocking any bonding legislation from moving forward this session.

The bill, which would have laid out $998 million in general obligation bonds for infrastructure projects across the state, fell just short of the required three-fifths majority in the Senate, with Democrats voting in opposition.

“This is the last train leaving the station for bonding,” said Senate Majority Leader Paul Gazelka, R-East Gull Lake. “It’s disappointing that we couldn’t come together tonight on this responsible, important bill. All four leaders and all four caucuses- including Senate Democrats- and the Governor, have to work together for Minnesota.”

The Senate bonding package was Senate Republican’s counteroffer to DFL representatives’ $2 billion bonding bill, which failed to pass the House on Saturday.

As the legislative session began to wind down, House Minority Leader Kurt Daudt, R-Crown, vowed to block any bonding legislation until Gov. Tim Walz gave up the emergency powers granted to him during the state’s peacetime emergency.

Earlier this year, Minnesota Gov. Tim Walz laid out a comprehensive bonding bill as his administration’s legislative priority for 2020. He proposed borrowing packages to address infrastructure projects, disaster preparedness and access to affordable housing, among other areas.