Minnesota legislators have been touring the state this fall, to receive a first-hand look at important public assets, and state-owned infrastructure that is wearing out. This work was in preparation for a capital bonding bill which will be considered in the 2020 session.
Bonding is important to Kandiyohi County and the surrounding region for the purpose of funding local roads and bridges. Without bonding our levies may likely increase. In Kandiyohi County alone, we have six deficient bridges.
The Association of Minnesota Counties has made transportation funding its number one priority for several years. We urge legislators to work together to address long-term, sustainable funding to provide a safer and more efficient system.
Transportation funding should not be a partisan issue. Nor should it be a rural/metro issue.
In 2008, Legislators on both sides of the aisle recognized that shoring up bur key transportation corridors was important to increasing our safety and strengthening our economy.
You will recall that one year earlier, the l-35W bridge collapsed. The eight cent per gallon gas tax increase was part of a ten-year plan that had bipartisan support.
To be sure, today, a user fee (gas tax) is not the only tool in the toolbox. By working together to identify those tools Minnesota leadership can once again move forward with transportation.
The 2008 bipartisan effort was successful. It allowed for increased efficiency in the movement of goods to market, and perhaps more importantly, increased safety.
Soon, Minnesota will be 12 years removed from our last ambitious transportation, package. Now it is time to look forward to the next decade and beyond.
Our safety and economic well-being is dependent on sustainable transportation funding. We urge you to keep Minnesota safe and prosperous.
Kandiyohi County Board of Commissioners
Roger Imdieke, Corky Berg, Steve Ahmann, Rollie Nissen and Harlan Madsen