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Rep. Persell issues statement on Minnesota Capitol bonding bill

Rep. John Persell, DFL-Bemidji, issued a news release Thursday with comments about the state's strategic bonding bill:

Today, the House voted on HF 2754, a bonding bill that would fund restoration and repair of Minnesota's State Capitol. Needing 81 votes to pass, the bill failed on a bi-partisan vote, 80-50.

HF 2754 would authorize $221 million to be used for restoring the Capitol, however, only approximately $70 million of that could be used immediately. The House Republican Majority has also introduced a $280 million bonding bill that would authorize funding of a relatively small number of regional projects in Minnesota.

State Representative John Persell offered the following comments on today's vote:

"With the clock ticking on session, I believe we need to be focusing on putting together a strategic bonding bill bi-partisanly. The Capitol restoration bill is not reflective of this need.

"We have important projects across the state and in our community that should be taking priority at this time. These projects will not only put people back to work, but it will help bolster our local economies, allowing them to thrive.

"I recognize the need for restoring the Capitol, but I don't agree that we should fund it at this size, with only a third of the funding being used now. That unused $150 million could go towards funding shovel-ready projects in our community, like the Northern Minnesota Veterans Home, and many others across the state.

"It's time to get serious. Minnesotans are depending on us to work together on a comprehensive bonding bill capable of putting folks back to work, while improving our local communities."