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Transportation bill stalling Minnesota legislature … still



Government has a week to figure it out before session ends

Democrats and Republicans are fighting. It’s nothing new.

Not in history and not in the past year and a half, as has been the case in Minnesota, where nobody can agree on how to come up with the $600 billion needed to fix the state’s roads and bridges.

While they argue in the legislature about it, everything else has been on hold.

The GOP plan calls for using part of the budget surplus and existing sales taxes on auto parts, repairs and more, to invest in fixing roads and bridges for the next decade. The plan also calls for funding mass-transit upgrades in the Twin Cities.

And while it’s held up everything in the legislature and nobody can agree on how to pay for it, state House Republican leader Kurt Daudt threw in the bill will also lower taxes?

“There are some things in the tax code that we can fix to help out middle class Minnesotans and really make a meaningful difference in their lives,” Daudt said, adding he’s optimistic the deal can be done before the session ends May 23.

Minnesota Gov. Mark Dayton has suggested a gas tax increase. Not happening says Republican (Preston) Greg Davids. Republicans have said any bill that contains a gas tax increase will be DOA.

“He comes out Monday with a plan that raises the gas tax,” Davids said. “It’s not a serious offer and we’ll know that quickly.”

Dayton said Friday he would spend the weekend cobbling together a compromised plan to put forward today. Any deal will be hashed out between Dayton, Dem. Senate majority leader Tom Bakk and Daudt. 

Born in Decorah Iowa. I've been a news reporter for the last 10 years, starting right out of college in Fort Dodge, Iowa. Other professional opportunities led me to Marshalltown, Iowa and Antigo Wisconsin, before I finally was afforded the opportunity here in La Crosse. I've been here since 2016. I also act as the voice of local sports, doing play by play of high school and college football and basketball. When not working I enjoy golfing.

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