Minnesota Governor unveils $1.27 billion public construction proposal

Democratic Gov. Tim Walz unveiled his first capital spending proposal Tuesday, a $1.27 billion public construction borrowing bill that he said would benefit the entire state, and he challenged Republicans to support it.

Walz announced the details at a veterans housing community that’s part of the historic Upper Post at Fort Snelling. He spoke in a building that once housed stables but was recently converted with a combination of public and private money into 58 apartments for veterans, many of whom were once homeless.

As the governor promised when he released his first budget last week, his ”bonding bill” includes $345 million for transportation and mass transit, $300 million for higher education split between the Minnesota State and University of Minnesota systems, $150 million for housing and $38.8 million for the prison system. Twenty-two percent of the projects are in greater Minnesota, 27 percent are in the Twin Cities area and 51 percent would have benefits statewide, he said.