Bonding bill fails on House floor

The House GOP unveiled their long-awaited bonding proposal Wednesday, but on Thursday it failed to garner enough votes for passage. It was voted down 69-64 on the House floor after failing to receive the 81 votes required to pass (a supermajority is needed to pass a bonding bill).

However, despite bonding bills failing to pass in both the House and Senate, a conference committee has been assembled to negotiate a bonding bill that can hopefully pass before the Legislature adjourns on Monday.

The House bonding bill that failed on Thursday would have invested $800 million in public works projects across the. It included $10 million for the Greater Minnesota Business Development Public Infrastructure (BDPI) Grant Program, which is one of the GMNP’s priorities. It also amended statutory language that would improve the BDPI program.

In contrast, the failed Senate bill included $15 million for the BDPI program, and the Governor proposed $21 for the program in his bonding plan. Although the GMNP would have liked to have seen more money invested in the BDPI program, we are pleased that the House bonding bill still made it a priority given the cap placed on Capital Investment Committee Chair Rep. Paul Torkelson (R-Hanska) by his caucus. As one might expect with an $800 million cap, many projects that were included in the Governor’s and Senate’s recommendations did not make it into the House bill at all.

Over the next few days we will be closely following negotiations on bonding and other bills, including the tax bill, which we hope will include our top priority — workforce housing tax credits — and we will keep members up-to-date via emails, Twitter (@the_gmnp) and Facebook.