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Walz proposes $300 million in borrowing for water projects

Updated: January 10, 2020 06:48 PM

Gov. Tim Walz says Minnesota should borrow $300 million to replace aging infrastructure and upgrade treatment facilities to protect its water supplies.

The Democratic governor's water package is part of what he says will be around a $2 billion borrowing proposal, also known as a bonding bill.

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He told reporters Friday that it's aimed at helping communities clean up existing contamination and upgrade aging facilities to prevent pollution from happening.

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"Every Minnesotan deserves access to clean, safe water," Walz said in a statement. "Yet aging infrastructure threatens the safety of our drinking water, the vitality of local communities, and the quality of the lakes and rivers we treasure as Minnesotans. This investment will allow communities across the state to repair infrastructure, prepare for severe weather events, clean up existing water contamination, and upgrade facilities to prevent pollution from happening in the first place."

Funds would be allocated to the Public Facilities Authority, Minnesota Pollution Control Agency, Metropolitan Council, Water and Soil Resources Board, Iron Range Resources and Rehabilitation Board, among other agencies.

Walz announced his affordable housing proposal Thursday. He plans to announce his higher education, public safety and local projects borrowing packages next week.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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Rebecca Omastiak

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