Republicans and Democrats have sharp differences over state bonding for public works projects, even as Governor Tim Walz prepares to roll out his request for public safety infrastructure on Wednesday. The governor says his total bonding request across all areas will be right around two billion dollars — but Senate Republicans are talking about less than half of that. Senate Majority Leader Paul Gazelka notes even though it’s a good time to borrow because interest rates are low, the state has a budget surplus: “We also have 1.3 billion dollars of cash, and there’s no reason we can’t explore that idea as well for projects, rather than bonding.”
Governor Walz responds the state, by paying 180 million dollars in bond interest, “we can leverage… two billion in projects and jobs. That’s the logic behind it.” A bonding bill is the main task of the 2020 legislative session which begins in about a month.